Mania: Rise of the Shitshow

The AB Association reflects on his 2022 Medium writings

Alexander Razin
5 min readJan 3, 2023
Photo by Ali Shot80 on Pexels

I said in last year’s Medium breakdown I didn’t know what I was doing.

I know exactly what I’m doing.

The only thing I had to do was execute it. My goal is to entertain readers with music, movie, TV, and video game articles. In 2021, given my passion, I began my Medium journey writing about music.

And the trend continued in 2022 as I learned more about my favorite niche through books, articles on Medium, and music publications. Unlike most music fans, I’m not an encyclopedia, but I know enough. For example, backmasking scared Christians in the ’80s, thinking it was subliminal messages from Satan. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’s “Thrift Shop” is the second indie song to reach No.1 on the Billboard Hot 100. Lisa Loeb’s “Stay (I Missed You)” was the first.

I also am well-versed in one of my favorite bands, Dance Gavin Dance. Yet, I screwed up in February when the Dance Gavin Dance subreddit tore my article apart. I wasn’t sure how to react, given I was sick with covid. Regardless, it was helpful that people criticized my article. I said to myself, “I’ll wait until I feel better to defend myself,” however, the time would not arrive. Sick or not, I have to face criticism. Their comments helped me realize I suck.

So, to improve, I practice more writing and editing. I ignored editing before since I didn’t have a premium spell checker. I bought Grammarly even though I was reluctant. Grammarly is a messy program, but it gives somewhat helpful corrections. Thanks to Grammarly, my writing flowed and seemed crisper than before.

It’s a shame I had other factors slowing down my writing progress. Back in January 2022, I caught COVID-19, and everything went downhill. Since COVID, I wonder if I’d feel exhausted and fatigued my entire life. Yet, I kept pushing forward regardless of the pain.

So with COVID, I wrote my best-performing story about the film Airplane! and why it’s better than other parody movies. The article did well, as I earned $73. 74. Yet, I always think I should’ve written it later, given I felt ill. The article would’ve performed better if I did.

Past my first hit, I had two other heavy hitters this year. In March, I wrote a list of ten no.1 hit songs that stayed on the Billboard Hot 100 for too long. I love the responses for this one — mostly the serious ones. This is a silly article about songs. Nothing more.

I should’ve used the humor tag since I’m (attempting to be a) comedian. Thankfully, I learned to use the humor tag in 2022 and will continue using it so readers would know I’m being funny. Regardless of using the tag, I understand a few jokes will land. Fortunately, developing my humor is something I improved in later articles.

No more jokes about horizontal sex. I promise.

The ten unwelcome number no.1 Billboard Hot 100 songs list has made $31.06.

My next heavy-hitter did as well as Airplane! Clocking in about the same views but making less money. The article was a ten-weird song list that made $42.61.

Compared to the unwelcomed Billboard songs list, this one had its fair share of comments. One comment I had to flag said, “what a fucking stupid photo. Remove it. Emojis are for 12-year-olds.” Then they attack others’ musical tastes by saying “Hotel California” should be on the list. I agree with them, but they were cruel. So cruel, I couldn’t help but laugh.

Here is the original photo they insulted.

Photo by Elīna Arāja on Pexels

What surprised me, my writings from 2021 still received reads. My article about Tom Waits earned $64, mostly with external views. And my Jonny Craig article is my most-view story externally. My writing isn’t the best here, but I won’t edit them to show my writing growth. However, I will rewrite the Jonny Craig article, as Jonny has made more music, and it’s my most viewed piece.

In the latter part of 2022, I had a few light-swingers, reflecting my writing growth.

October was another great month for music articles. A thought piece about modern counterculture and six unusual genres did well. They accumulated $9 in total. They made a little money, but I enjoyed writing them. I’ll write similar articles in 2023.

Even though I felt sick and tired, 2022 went well for me. The criticism I experienced helped me become a better writer. Those subreddit comments pushed me to find my balance of humor and passion. So much so that it frightens me how much I’ve improved since writing is my weakness.

Every idea I have this year (I’m not sharing) will make my dreams come true. As 2023 goes by, I have remembered the winning formula: more Airplane and ten lists articles. Write more articles in a similar vein, and you will have it all.

I hope I will. And I hope my body lets me.

I pray it does, as I would like to know more about my favorite niches (i.e., music, movies, tv, and video games.) Not become a walking, talking encyclopedia. But know enough to understand what I’m doing and saying.

This is no simple task for Alexander B, yet it won’t be for his persona. So let’s pay a warm welcome to Alexander [name pending.] They’re staying indefinitely.

I also pay my success to fans and readers. Thank you, Thief, If Ever You’re Listening, Terry Barr, Lark Morrigan, Michael Centrone, and many others! You’re not acquaintances and fellow writers. You’re my friends. I will stop ghosting you guys this year as proof.

See you on the other side.

One last thing. I added the tip option as I feel more confident with my writing.

Thanks for reading!

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Alexander Razin

Aficionado and connoisseur of obscure and experimental music, movies, and TV. Fictional and nonfictional pieces have their place here, too