How to rewrite a book in one day (with sticky notes)
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How to rewrite a book in one day (with sticky notes)

In 2009, Ted Schadler and I had a problem. The back half of our book Empowered wasn’t working. This is how we fixed it. We were nearing the manuscript deadline for Empowered, Ted’s and my book about strategies to deal with empowered consumers and workers. The front half of the book, about consumers (and marketing), was holding together pretty…

Replay, unanswered questions from Writing Without Bullshit webinar

Replay, unanswered questions from Writing Without Bullshit webinar

After 400 people attended my Webinar last week and we got dozens of questions. Scroll to the bottom of this post for the recorded replay. Below are my best answers to some fascinating questions about the meaning ratio, tone, reviews, and what causes bullshit. (Questions edited for brevity and grammar.) What is a good meaning ratio target? (Mike DeWees)…

How to see the future

How to see the future

I’ve learned to anticipate what’s going to happen. You can, too, if you combine experience with seeing. I’ll be bombing down a busy city street on my bike, as I have for the last 40 years. I can read the car that’s angled 15 degrees to the left, the truck idling anxiously at the red light,…

Explaining digital disruption to three-year-olds
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Explaining digital disruption to three-year-olds

As an analyst, I told stories about complex technology, but I learned to tell them simply. When you’re trying to get your point across, that’s essential. One night in 1999 I was giving my three-year-old a bath. My kid was bright, good with language, and, like Dad, a bit of a smartass. And like many three-year-olds…

Post-John Boehner, New York Times unleashes metaphorical tsunami
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Post-John Boehner, New York Times unleashes metaphorical tsunami

How many metaphors can The New York Times pack into one article about the resignation of House Speaker John Boehner? Enough metaphors to choke a . . . c’mon, help me here. To choke a something-or-other. Can you spare a metaphor? Metaphors are a great way to frame a story; knowledgeable people will often supply one in a…