Tag Archives: writing

So you want to write a book


You have made an excellent decision which will generate almost no income, leave you without more letters to attach to the end of your name, and will take up hours upon hours of your valuable spare time.

listenladyribbonAll depressing facts aside, there are many good things about writing a book. First of all, and most importantly, writing a book will force your to think through your opinions very carefully, consider the pros and cons of your arguments, and address all the points that you normally avoid because they simply get your goat. Writing a book helps you clarify your thoughts and discover what you do and don’t know. It’s a great learning tool that can’t be replaced by reading blogs or taking a class.

A nice bonus to writing a book is that it helps you improve your writing skills. I, for one, did not realize there were a few words that I overused like some people overuse ‘um’ when they’re talking. I just have a terrible habit of just inserting the word just every time it just seems like the right place to just insert the word. I also seem to really overuse words that really don’t need an extra word to really make the point. Really, truly, completely, totally,  terribly, and other similar ly words don’t make your point more precise. They make your point longer. After reading a few books on how to write a book, I was able to spot many weaknesses in my writing. And I keep finding them. And improving my writing.

Finally, writing a book gives you a great sense of accomplishment. You can hold the finished product in your hands at the end of the day and know that you did that. And that’s pretty cool.

So back to depressing part. If you want to write a book, be prepared to spend hundreds of hours at your laptop while other people are biking and hiking and skiing and playing hockey. Be prepared to write even when you have a massive case of writer’s block. Be prepared for people to ask are you done yet after you deleted ten pages of horrid garbage.

The depressing part is what made me dump the formal text book style of my book and start over again with what would eventually become The Listen Lady novel. It was definitely a non-standard choice and I figured if my book was boring me, it would certainly bore everyone else. So as you sit down and decide that now is the right time for you to write a book, consider this.

It doesn’t HAVE to be a text book. It doesn’t HAVE to be 400 pages long. It doesn’t HAVE to be written with formal language. If your book is 10 chapters and 100 examples of behavioural economics, then so be it. If your book is a 50 page sonnet about mobile research, then so be it. You need to love your book and if that means you write a non-standard book, then so be it.

I did. It makes a great gift for any research on your shopping list. 🙂

The Most Powerful Effective Blog Post I’ll Ever Write

According to the 60 Second Marketer, the following sentence is the most powerful and effective sentence you will ever read.

I have new research results to prove I’ve discovered a free and easy way for you to guarantee love, improve your health and safety, and save money now.

Apparently, 14 words have been identified as more likely to tap into our emotional centers and trigger unconscious thoughts and feelings.  If you do a little introspection, you can feel the emotions in yourself as you consider each word.

  • Free
  • Now
  • You
  • Save
  • Money
  • Easy
  • Guarantee
  • Health
  • Results
  • New
  • Love
  • Discovery
  • Proven
  • Safety

Well, that’s just fine and dandy. But how can we use this to our advantage?

  • Blog titles with these words will likely have higher click through rates.
  • TV commercials using these words will likely have higher recall
  • Newspapers ads with these words will likely have higher recall
  • Product descriptions using these words are likely to be looked at and picked up more often
  • Sales pitches using these words are more likely to be effective

One hint of advice – just don’t use all the words at once like I did. Pick just one or two because, as you saw, does it ever read like a spammy infomercial!

How to Motivate Yourself to Blog: Read the Undying Praise of your Spammers

Chico and his moose

Image by scpetrel via Flickr

No matter how hard you try, sometimes you just have no confidence in your writing skills. That is when you should start a blog. Because the spam comments you will receive will do nothing but make you feel like you are contributing the most amazing information EVER to your industry. Below is just a small sample of the praise I have received from spammers. Feel free to add your own or plagiarize from these!

“This is laid out really successfully and you are able to see from the top high quality, that it has been researched and thought out very nicely. I’ve bookmarked it and am going to forward it to other people that i know will be extremely interested within the information. My father is in this industry, he’ll adore the way you laid out the details, I’ve sent him your hyperlink. I have alos posted a permanent hyperlink on my web page for other to find this. It’s hard for anyone to disagree with this, the info is fantastically put together.”

“Im impressed, I must say. Very rarely do I come across a site thats both informative and entertaining, and let me tell you, youve hit the nail on the head. Your site is important; the issue is something that not enough people are talking intelligently about. Im really happy that I stumbled across this in my search for something relating to this issue.”

I simply want to tell you that I am very new to blogging and site-building and definitely savored your web-site. More than likely I’m want to bookmark your blog post . You definitely have fabulous writings. Thanks a lot for sharing your blog site.

All I can say is, I’m not sure what to comment! Except of course, for the fantastic tips that happen to be shared within this blog. I’m able to think of a trillion fun strategies to read the content on this site. I think I will finally take action employing your tips on areas I could not have been able to touch alone. You’re so clever to permit me to be one of those to benefit from your valuable information. Please realize how considerably I appreciate it.

“I as well as my friends were actually following the excellent strategies from your site while immediately I got an awful feeling I had not thanked the blog owner for those tips. Those young men were as a result stimulated to learn them and now have honestly been loving them. Appreciate your getting considerably kind and for settling on some magnificent subjects most people are really eager to learn about. My personal honest regret for not expressing appreciation to you earlier.”

“It truly is rare to come across a professional person in whom you may have some faith. In the world today, nobody truly cares about showing others the solution in this subjecttopic. How lucky I am to have definitely found such a wonderful web site as this. It is really people like you exactly who make a genuine difference in this world through the suggestions they talk about.”

Would you read my book?

[tweetmeme source=”lovestats” only_single=false]I come from a long line of crazy, I mean interesting, characters, a line long enough to fill an encyclopedia of vampire and wizard books. For example, I know:

  • Someone who has created specialized tools for the removal of illegal advertising signs around the neighbourhood, even those that are ten feet high on telephone polls in the middle of major intersections, or signs that are 5 by 5 feet square corrugated plastic that don’t even fit in the car.
  • Someone who underlines the important information, with pen and ruler, in newspapers at the library. The library’s newspapers. Because no one more important than him reads them anyways.
  • Someone whose daily task list includes breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and the sooner each of these is checked off that annoying list the better. Even if lunch is at 10am and dinner at 3pm.
  • Someone who eats nothing but sugar, is crazy about hummingbirds, and rants for hours about effect sizes. Actually, that person sounds really awesome.

I’ve got a book in me that’s about to be underlined. This time I’m doing it. Would you read it?


I Write Like by MĂ©moires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

6 reasons why you should start a blog now

Illustration depicting thought.

Image via Wikipedia

[tweetmeme source=”lovestats” only_single=false]My blog goes through ups and downs. Sometimes I have nothing to say and other times I have ten posts ready at the end of a day. But why do I blog at all?

  1. Blogging clarifies my thinking. I have tons of ideas but writing them down means I have to think through the arguments carefully so that they become solid. I often find that my positions shift a little or a lot as a result.
  2. Every blog increases my subject line experiment by a sample size of 1. Will this title put a blip in the reader chart? Will this content put a blip in the comment chart? I love seeing the little blips in the charts and trying to figure out why it happened. Charts are my friends.
  3. I find like-minded friends. Sometimes I think I have an uncommon opinion but as soon as I post it, lots of people share their ‘me toos!’ What I thought was a risky opinion may actually be a common opinion just waiting to get out. And…I find different minded friends. These folks challenge my opinions and make me think harder. No matter whether I change my mind, my argument and my thought process is better for it.
  4. I meet people from around the world many of whom I would have never met otherwise, many of whom feel like penpals now. The world seems even smaller now than my pre-blogging days now that I have researcher friends in Australia, Belgium, Israel, and many other countries I have never even been to.
  5. It’s a good way to practice your writing skills in a small, but regular way. Bit by bit, I can tell that my writing is improving and I can write a lot more, a lot quicker, a lot more coherently.
  6. I’m really not a social person but this way, I can be. Take note all you introverted and/or shy people.

Why do you blog? Why DON’T you blog?

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