Writers Are Like Party Hosts

#quicktips Apr 19, 2021

A great writer is like the host of a great party. The host is primarily concerned that the guests are enjoying themselves and getting good things out of the experience.

A host avoids indulging him- or herself because a host's obligation lies elsewhere. By the way, that's not a bad thing. Attending a party yields one kind of enjoyment. Overseeing the party yields another.

When you write something, think of yourself as the host. It's not about you. It's about your guests.

(This splendid idea comes from Charles P. Curtis, Jr., a brilliant writer and thinker of the mid-20th century.)


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Be Clear, Not Clever

#editing #quicktips Mar 02, 2021

A lesson in straightforward writing from when I was a kid.

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Anything But a Yes... Is a No


We tend to say "yes" immediately but beat around the bush when it's no -- but that only telegraphs the rejection to come. Here's how to stop doing that.

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To State a Claim, Ask a Question


Here's a way to be more creative with your language when doing the never-ending tasking of framing up a topic for your audience.

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Do Your Readers Know What a Semi-colon Means? Probably Not...


When you're a communicator, you avoid words that are obscure to the reader. That applies to punctuation, too.


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Best or Worst, You Say? Compared to What?


"That's the best!" you say. "That's the worst!" you say.

That's among the weakest ways to express yourself. Here's why -- and how to fix it.

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Change the Way You Usually Start Writing.


We usually ask, "What's the topic?"

Stop that.

Instead, first ask what you want the reader to do after they’ve read it.


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Super-Size Edition: All About Adverbs

#quicktips #speechwriting Oct 07, 2020

Adverbs aren’t your friends – but are they ever useful?

Yes! When they change the meaning of the sentence!

Check out today’s super-sized video for a practical rule on using adverbs.

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Three Tips To Writing A *Fact Sheet* -- Faster!

#audience #quicktips Sep 23, 2020

My favorite writing tips are the ones you can use this instant. Here are three ways to speed things up when you’re writing a fact sheet.

Check out today’s video!

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The Last Thing You Say...

#audience #quicktips Sep 15, 2020

…is the thing they remember most.

Whether writing or talking, put your request for the end – the very end.

(See? Put it at the end, just like that.)

Check the video!

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