8 Bad Habits that Crush Your Creativity and Stifle Your Success

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“The brain is a wonderful organ. It starts the moment you get up and doesn’t stop until you get into the office.” ~ Robert Frost

It’s a myth that only highly intelligent people are creative.

In fact, research shows that once you get beyond an I.Q. of about 120, which is just a little above average, intelligence and creativity are not at all related.

That means that even if you’re no smarter than most people, you still have the potential to wield amazing creative powers.

So why are so few people highly creative?

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Want People To Read Your Sales Page?
Make It Scannable

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There are two types of sales page readers: those who faithfully read every word, and those who skim until they get to the end.

Since you want to sell to both of these groups, you have to know exactly how to capture and hold the attention of each — and doing so in the same sales page is no small feat.

The good news is, you can use the same writing strategy to get each group to engage with what you’re reading … and ultimately to buy what you’re selling.

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50 Can’t-Fail Techniques for Finding Great Blog Topics

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It’s one thing to know you need to create lots of great content. It’s another to actually know what you’re going to write about this week.

Are you out of ideas for blog posts? Small wonder, if the only place you’re looking is inside your own head. We all need inspiration … and you’re not going to find it banging your head against the desk and hoping an idea falls out.

You need fresh inspiration if you’re going to come up with new ideas.

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Copyblogger Weekly Wrap:
Week of September 19, 2010

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This week, I finalized my plans to join the Blogworld hullaballoo in Las Vegas, which is where I’ll be winning my fortune at the blackjack tables, or possibly losing my house, or possibly not even playing blackjack at all. Blackjack is the game where you hit the ball on the rope until you wrap it around the pole, right?

Now, I try to be understanding, but you wouldn’t believe how hard it is to get Copyblogger to buy you round-trip first class airfare and a $3000 per night Sky Loft suite at the MGM Grand. The negotiations were intense. “But I write the wrapup,” I argued. “Who are you and why are you hiding in my closet?” Brian retorted.

And so it goes.

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Follow Your MAP to
Greater Writing Productivity

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When you hear the word “outline,” do you give a little shudder?

You’re not alone. For so many of us, the outline evokes painful memories of five-paragraph essays, clumsy thesis statements, and prayers for snow days.

Outlines tend to make writers, especially younger ones, feel confined and boxed in, forced to quell their creativity for the sake of structure.

It’s time to let those middle school nightmares go. An outline can be so much more than where Roman numerals go to die.

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The Responsible Blogger’s Guide to
Dealing with Big Brother

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“What should I be doing better with my blog?”

That’s one helluva question, isn’t it? As someone who blogs to support a thriving business, I think about that question every day.

There are a lot of answers, many of which involve sexy topics like traffic, subscribers, and getting one zillion followers on Twitter.

But when’s the last time you sat down and answered the question above with:

“I should be paying more attention to blogging ethics.”

Not so sexy.

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7 Ways the iPad Can Bring Back
Your Writing Mojo

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The iPad is here. And it’s here to stay.

There is a sea change going on within the mobile computing industry. And despite the cool, slick look of these devices, it’s not the hardware that makes them useful. It’s the applications (apps). Apps are little engines of innovation driving the current (and future) trends in computing, publishing, print, and media.

There are apps for everything you can imagine. In fact, the latest count shows there are more than 250,000.

But did you know that there are even apps that can help you get your mojo back if you need some writing inspiration?

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Why Being Too Diligent About Your Facts
Can Hurt Your Content

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Once upon a time, the world was flat.

Now it’s round.

Who knows? Maybe some day we’ll find out it’s square.

It’s hard to come across a cold hard fact anymore.

Drink 8 glasses of water a day. Drink 16 glasses of water a day. Don’t drink any water; get all your water from fruits and vegetables.

The contradictory advice goes on forever. There’s almost nothing you can nail down with absolute certainty.

Even your own content.

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Copyblogger Weekly Wrap:
Week of September 12, 2010

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Nope, I didn’t get fired. I’m back in the saddle around here, ready to summarize things for you and put them into an easily digestible, bullet point form.

So why the layoff on the weekly wraps (now twice as delish with half the calories)? Well, it was summer. Brian and Sonia wanted a break from removing libelous statements from my scribblings, and I wanted time to pursue my hobby of reworking large companies’ marketing slogans.

For example: BP: Well, at least you know who we are now.

No? Okay, fine… here’s what happened this week on Copyblogger and around the web:

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3 Reasons to Tell Readers Why

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You know you’re right, right?

Everyone should fall in line and accept what you know in your heart to be true.

Sorry, that’s not how people work.

So much of persuasive writing comes down to proof. And so many people fail at persuasion because they offer assertions without giving people reasons.

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