11 Insights on Finding a Writing Voice Readers Take Seriously [SlideShare]

11 famous authors help you find your writing voice

This is the trap we typically fall into online:

We survey the landscape, note what our contemporaries and competitors are doing, and do likewise. We might put a small spin on what we see, but we largely end up saying something mild and meaningless to avoid criticism. God forbid if we upset the applecart.

Poppycock. Online, you must upset the applecart. Particularly if your livelihood is on the line.

As my friend Joanna Wiebe said, the attention and sales go to the people who “say something of consequence.” That convinces people to take you seriously.

And I’m not talking about being sensational here. Don’t say something controversial for the sake of controversy.

Instead, dig deep during your research to uncover the hook — the one idea that takes a risk and stands out. The angle, words, or voice in your content marketing that make people take a second look. Even if it is shocking.

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The Perfect Anatomy of a Modern Web Writer [Infographic]

The Perfect Anatomy of a Modern-Day Web Writer (Infographic)

High school was an era of my life I never really want to repeat. Not because it was a nightmare. Yes, there was a little turbulence, but mostly bewilderment and embarrassment.

  • Why do I have to read The Old Man and the Sea while my gym teacher sleeps behind a newspaper?
  • Why do I have to stand in the cold with other lackluster teenagers waiting for a bell to ring?
  • And why am I wearing a white leather jacket with padded shoulders?

To this day, I have no clue why they gave me a diploma:

Me: Did I do something to earn this?

High School: No. Just leave, please.

Hey, not a problem. Happy to oblige. Yet, there was at least one high point during my dim career in secondary school.

Biology class. Specifically, the anatomy portion of biology class.

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5 Powerful Ways to Keep Building Authority Once Your Content Has Matured

Mature content

You’ve launched. You now have loads of content on your blog. You’re happy with the growth and the traction you’ve gained. Your audience is growing — not as fast as you’d like, but you’re meeting goals.

Things are looking up because you’ve created authority with what seems to be a solid and loyal audience. But the rush of new content ideas is slowing, and enthusiasm (both yours and your audience’s) is cooling.

You’re worried about sustaining the momentum while deepening your authority and influence with your audience. And there’s a really good reason why this is a significant concern.

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How to Become an Exceptional Writer

4 ways to become an outstanding writer

A man and boy sit in an old house crowded with furniture, sunlight, and dust.

A guitar rests on the boy’s knee. Tiny fingers grip and pluck the strings. The man is nodding, rocking as the boy plays.

The man is Jack White — of The White Stripes, The Raconteurs, and The Dead Weather fame. The boy is his son. This scene is part of the documentary It Might Get Loud.

As Jack White teaches his son to play guitar, he says:

You have to fight the guitar … And you have to win.

That’s an incredible piece of advice for playing guitar. And it’s some of the best writing advice … ever.

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The Unstoppable Rise of the Digital Content Creator

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I’m typing this article on a pretty powerful machine — and it’s no bigger than the size of a Vogue magazine.

On this same machine, I can collaborate, record, edit, and publish a video — or even a movie.

I can record, edit, and publish a podcast.

Software has made all this — and more — a reality.

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Don’t Panic, But This Article Was Written by an Algorithm

Shocking news! Computers can now write content

I don’t care how many times you read this opening paragraph. Study it word for word. Examine it frontwards and backwards. You won’t be able to conclusively tell whether it was written by a human or machine.

Don’t believe me? Read this sports story, and tell me if it was written by a human or machine:

Tuesday was a great day for W. Roberts, as the junior pitcher threw a perfect game to carry Virginia to a 2-0 victory over George Washington at Davenport Field.

Human or machine? Here’s the answer: It was written by a machine. (I wrote the opening paragraph.)

See, when it comes to a computer-generated story, there aren’t any telltale signs that it’s manufactured by a machine. That’s how good this machine-written content is getting.

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