Archive for On Writing Better

How to Write Great Blog Posts Every Time

Success How to Write Great Blog Posts Every TimeHow do you create quality content that attracts online readers and yet works to promote the growth of your business?

Creating great content for your business blog is a what and how issue, as in what constitutes “good” content, and how does one produce that content so that it brings in the readers that a business blogger wants. Quality content stimulates reader/customer engagement.

Here’s what quality web content looks like: It’s short, sweet, smart, and funny: Read More→

A Quiz: Test Your Content Marketing and Blog Writing Knowledge

Quiz What is Quality Content A Quiz: Test Your Content Marketing and Blog Writing KnowledgeQuality blog posts are key to your business getting found on the Web. While that may sound obvious – (“Of course, why would I write something ho-hum boring?”) it’s harder than you might think. Not everyone agrees on what quality content is.

Quality content scores high with readers, your target clients, and with search engines. If you want to get found, get known and get clients online, you need to write and publish quality blog posts that resonate with your readers.

Two weeks ago I posed the question, “what makes you mad?” This can be a great first step in uncovering a hidden drive – what motivates you. It can also help identify what drives your readers; what content resonates with them. Read More→

The ABC’s of Business Blogging:
Create Shareable Content – Don’t Be a Bore

Create Shareable Content The ABC’s of Business Blogging:  <br>Create Shareable Content – Don’t Be a BoreIn the world of business blogging and content marketing, there’s nothing worse than a bore.

I know we’ve all seen bad content marketing – blogs that are irrelevant, outdated, full of incorrect information, typos, rambling rants and silly drivel. But what I find to be the worst is mediocrity. Read More→

Success Secrets of a Writing Career:
WOOT & WOOF

AuthorAttitude Nina Amir 226x300 Success Secrets of a Writing Career: <br>WOOT & WOOFSome say success for a writing career is a question of attitude. You simply put on your super-hero cape and think positively… I say ‘hogwash!’ Thinking doesn’t drive results.

There is no secret ‘law of attraction’ for achieving a writing career. A success mindset helps you tap into energy, but unless you get into action, all you’ve got are dreams.

Dreams come easy for writers, too easy. Take any writing assignment, either for yourself, your own business, blog, or ebook, or one for a paying client. Chances are, you’ll spend as much time dreaming about the piece as you will actually writing it.

Recently I read a good post about “The 5 Qualities You Need to Successfully Self-Publish Your Book,” by Nina Amir on The Future of Ink blog. She suggests adopting an “author attitude” of WOOT, from The Author Training Manual.

This clever acronym suggests five attitudes for successful writers: Read More→

How to Make Yourself Blog When You Just Don’t Feel Like Blogging

bigstock boom 400058381 300x216 How to Make Yourself Blog When You Just Dont Feel Like BloggingHere’s a tip for how to make yourself write a blog post when you’re totally uninspired. Use other people’s inspiration to motivate you.

For example, take a look at what you’re reading on the Web right now. If it’s good enough to catch your interest, maybe you can use that spark to create something new for your readers?

Here’s how I went from barely awake blog procrastination to publishing this morning.

You can tell a lot about a person just by reading the titles of the web pages they’ve got open. Right now I’m reading posts on Harvard Business Review:

  1. “How to Make Yourself Work When You Just Don’t Want to”
  2. “The Daily Routines of Geniuses”
  3. “Stop Trying to Control People or Make Them Happy”

And one on Hubspot: “12 Inspirational Writing Tips from History’s Greatest Authors.” Read More→

Better Blog Writing: Getting Hooked by Your Own Hook

MagneticHeadlines 300x225 Better Blog Writing: Getting Hooked by Your Own HookIt must have been the coffee. But there I was at 5 a.m. looking for a “hook,” a magnetic headline that would draw readers into my client’s blog like bees to honey. The client needed a post that day, and I needed to write and edit what she’d given me quickly. After all, my morning tennis partners were waiting for me.

Eureka! I cried as I found a cleverly compelling hook, saved my post as a draft and ran off to the tennis courts. Only, when I returned to the office two hours later, my client had a left a message, “Uh, …it’s great except for the headline and lead. Call me back.”

I blame it on the coffee. The hook was indeed inspiring, only it had little to do with the message my client was trying to convey. But a little caffeine and dopamine in the brain can fool you into thinking your writing’s great – and never mind it’s missing the point. Read More→

Creative Work, Blogging, Writing and Resistance

bigstock D White People Antivirus Pro 43001323 300x218 Creative Work, Blogging, Writing and ResistanceEver get stuck? Everyone encounters resistance when it comes to blogging, writing, and creative work. It’s so easy to give in, isn’t it? When it comes to doing work – putting words on the page… or electrons on a screen – you can’t escape getting stuck.

It doesn’t matter if you’re a scientist, blogger, CEO or rock star. Work requires you to actually do something. When you sit down to do it (or stand up, whatever), you experience stuckness – a state of mental morass punctuated by mind chatter and an inability to move. Read More→

Bloggers Block? How to Get Your Creative Writing Mojo Back

Bloggers Block 239x300 Bloggers Block? How to Get Your Creative Writing Mojo BackEver get stuck with blogger’s block? Can’t get a spark of creativity going? Fingers just lay there on the keyboard like wet noodles… How can you get your creative writing going again?

Finding yourself in the horror of a creation-less void is never good. Your mind empties of anything that seems worthy of being said, and you feel helpless.

Writer’s and blogger’s block is a completely natural event experienced by writers, usually as a side-effect of writing for a deadline. Everyone has experienced it, and it’s not uncommon to panic a bit when it happens.

Here are some suggestions from a writer who’s been around the block…

Read Read More→

Content Marketing Adventures in Mexico: Stuck on My Own Roof

IMG 0428 300x225 Content Marketing Adventures in Mexico: Stuck on My Own RoofI’ve got a Mardi Gras parade dancing down my street right now, in my sleepy little village of Ajijic, near Guadalajara in Mexico. It happens three or four times a year, always because of religious fiestas: the whole village dresses in costumes on floats with music blaring as loud as possible.

It’s so loud it’s hard to think. I couldn’t finish my content marketing project for a client, so to get a good view, I went up on my roof to watch. It seemed like a great idea at the time.

And it was great… until I wanted to come down. I realized that dropping over one roof top ledge to another is easy enough. Not so when you’ve got to go back up and over the ledge and it’s just out of reach. Read More→

Expert Ebooks: Relax and Write

Suit and Tie Writing 225x300 Expert Ebooks: Relax and WriteIf you want to write well, you’ve got to strip down and get real: write relaxed. Nobody wants to read an expert ebook if your words are wearing a three-piece suit and a tightly buttoned shirt and tie.

Too many executives who want to write an expert ebook are in love with syllables, syntax and sycophants. When you write words to impress, you don’t write well. You don’t impress.

Instead, relax and write. Take off the tie, relax and write as authentically as possible using words any high school student can understand. You’ll impress many more people and get your message heard by those who actually need your wisdom.

Highly educated readers can sniff out academic or business jargon and won’t be impressed but simply annoyed. Even geniuses like things spelled out for them in clear language. Leave them some room to think about big ideas, not wade through your big words.

I’m not suggesting “dumbing down.” It actually takes intelligence to write clearly so that anyone can understand.

Less educated readers like being invited to understand complexities with easily accessible words and sentences. Don’t leave them out by using insider terms, acronyms, and cryptic allusions.

In the work I do with executive coaches and consultants, they often become so entrenched in industry-specific business jargon, they aren’t clear to a global audience of working people. When seasoned professionals want to write their book, what may seem common sense to them isn’t clear to the world at large.

This is where an experienced editor and writing coach can help. Often, the pre-work to writing an ebook hasn’t been done.

What I call the “pre-work” to writing an expert ebook is becoming clear not only about the desired message, but clear about who you’re are writing for:

  • Who are your readers?
  • What problem or pain can you fix?
  • How will you change your readers’ lives for the better?
  • What’s in it for them?
  • What’s your message and what do you want them to do?

If you’d like to learn more, I’ve prepared a 10-question worksheet that will help you get started writing your expert ebook. You can get it (free) by going to www.Ebooks4Experts.com and requesting it.