Here’s Where Brian is Speaking in the Coming Months


I always forget to mention I’m speaking at a conference until sometime around the day before. To the extent some of you might want to know in advance (can’t imagine why), here’s where I’ll be speaking in the near future.

But first, I need your help getting one of those speaking gigs approved. Some really smart guys and I have applied to do a South by Southwest Interactive panel on brain science and psychological research as it applies to design and marketing (“neuromarketing”).

Check out the details here, and please vote for us so we get approved by the SXSW people. Thanks!

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How to Write With a Knife

woman with sword

Think it’s impossible to write with a knife?

Not at all. You might even say it’s essential.

Well, to be more precise, no one actually writes with a knife. But good writers do edit with one.

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Do Long Blog Posts Scare Away Readers?

long road

Some writers don’t seem to know when to shut up. They ramble and pontificate and theorize, seemingly oblivious to the agony it’s causing everyone else.

To avoid this awful fate, you probably try to keep your posts short, chopping up longer ideas into a series of posts. No need to scare away readers by dumping too much information on them all at once, right?

Makes sense, but what’s weird is it doesn’t work that way.

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Are Vampire Words Sucking the Life
Out of Your Writing?


Vampires are everywhere at the moment. At the movies (Twilight), on your TV (True Blood) … and in your copy.

It’s nothing new. E.B. White recognised the problem in his revision of Strunk’s Elements of Style:

“Rather, very, little, pretty – these are the leeches that infest the pond of prose, sucking the blood of words.”

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The Strategy Behind the
Authority Rules Report

Authority Rules

At the beginning of the month, I released a free report called Authority Rules: The 10 Rock Solid Elements of Effective Online Marketing. People seemed to really appreciate it, especially since:

  • No email address is required
  • You can read via PDF or the web
  • There are no affiliate links
  • There’s no pitch (other than subscribe to Copyblogger)

This led to a lot of speculation. Why did I do it this way? What was the strategy behind this approach? Has Brian finally lost it?

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Confessions of a Comment Addict


My name is Johnny Truant, and I am a comment addict.

A large amount of my self-worth as a blogger is defined not by my traffic, or readership, or income, or buzz. It’s defined by the relatively meaningless number below each post that counts the people who fill out a form and click Submit.

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Please Help Us Defeat Breast Cancer

Avon Walk for Breast Cancer

On September 12-13, Chris Pearson, Missy Ward and yours truly (along with our other wonderful team members) will be walking 40 miles in the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer in Los Angeles.

Not only that, Chris and I are donating $20,000 on behalf of DIY Themes (at Missy’s request, we’re splitting the donation between Avon and the National Breast Cancer Foundation).

Can you help us raise even more?

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Blogging Is A Dialect:
Do You Speak It?

Earth Boy

I have a vivid memory of using the word “idiosyncrasy” in fifth grade during a group project. I didn’t know the definition, just the word. This enraged a boy named Chance to the point where he spit on me and encouraged everyone else to do so. We all fought on the floor until the teacher pulled us apart.

I don’t blame the little ruffian, even though his favorite game was putting a bucket on his head and charging the wall. It was my fault. I’m a librarian and have always been one at heart. My parents pushed learning, curiosity, and books and that was the boy they created.

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Is Writing Obsolete?

quill pen

The written word is having a tough time.

It’s not just that literacy rates are surprisingly bad. (One source maintains that half of American adults can’t read an eighth grade-level book.) But even among people who can read, fewer and fewer want to read.

If you’re a passionate reader (as I am), this might bring you to the brink of despair.

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Educate to Dominate Your Competition


First off, check out this quotation:

It is easier to resist at the beginning than at the end.
~Leonardo da Vinci

Now, let me ask you this… How do you spark the buying process without a lot of high-pressure, high-hype selling?

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