What is your passion, desire, and drive with the written word? What style drives your writing? Is it non-fiction novels, fiction novels, marketing copy, email subscriber shorts…?
Having written in all of the above genres, I have found I enjoy fiction writing, especially in the Thriller genre. How did I ever come to this conclusion?
I wrote and published my first novel, then took time off from that to pursue many other forms of writing.
Recently, I spent time with a very good friend of mine who is is a prolific author writing fiction, but with a historical, factual twist. His current livelihood is in an area far removed from writing, but that livelihood paid the bills, sent his daughters off to college, and allowed him to pay off his house; and then some.
But, as he finds more time to write, research, and write some more, his passion increases as does his paycheck.
There is a book called, Think and Grow Rich, by Napolean Hill. In it, the author spends considerable time laying out how desire is the key and primary driving force in getting things done in life. It is an easy read, with many personal questions asked of the reader in determining what they may want out of life.
So what am I getting at? What’s my passion? It is writing exciting tales for the tales’ sake. Will I continue to pursue editing or proofreading or maybe even some marketing copy on the side? Yes, of course. Any writing helps one to get better at writing overall.
But, I have spent a lot of time away from the things I super enjoy. Now, I most certainly can and will apply what I have learned in those other writing areas to my novels. In fact, the skills I learned should make my progress about 1000% faster than my first novel.
Take some time and investigate what makes you tick. Where is your passion? How is your desire something unique to you and how can you pursue it?
I’m believing you will enjoy life even more, with that new sense of discovery and adventure as a result.
How do we want to feel at the end of the day? A lot better, that’s how.
How Do We Feel Better?
Oftentimes we’re stuck in a rut and we’re not sure how to get out of it. We need more information – useful information – allowing us open doors of deliverance and success.
Self-help is an amazing field. Tap into whatever you need and receive the deliverance you are looking for. It is that easy. It does wake work and it does require consistency. But the effort will be worth it.
With all this in mind, what do you think about when you hear the term, “Self-help”?
Could it be in the realm of a spiritual theme, psychological improvement, emotional stability through tough times?
These are awesome. Are they the only “labels” we should hold in our minds?
I’d like to offer you, the reader, with another angle.
Take Advantage of Life’s Opportunities
What if Self-help could be in the category of practical things?
How to improve the security of your home.
How to be more situationally aware in life.
How to operate a motor vehicle more efficiently, safer and with a greater awareness.
These all move in the arena of psychological and emotional needs too.
How will I feel when I have successfully kept my family safe?
What kind of confidence will I have on the road after applying proven driving techniques?
This is wonderfully “self-helping”. Maybe not what we immediately think of while looking at videos of flowing springs, fluffy clouds floating by or listening as a brook bubbles its way past us with our feet dipped in its coolness. But…
If I can help you raise the level of you in your life, get you to a higher plane where you feel more empowered, then I have helped you in this amazing self-help field.
You have more tools, techniques, resources with which to improve your life.
You took action saw results. So did your family, friends, neighbors, children.
You come away empowered and excited.
Applying new ways of doing things or starting anything with a fresh and proven perspective is amazing. You will feel great, you will be more enthused, you will love yourself even more.
Talking to people in ads, cover letters, landing pages, sales letters and the list goes on.
So, how do we do it genuinely, with enthusiasm, directness? How do we write as though our potential clients are our best friends?
Have you ever been camping or hiking? Have you ever “discovered” the coolest trail just off your campsite that leads to a wonderful haven holding the perfect pond and picturesque climb?
(If you haven’t, imagine that you have – all of the smells, sounds, sights, relaxing among the trees…)
While at your site, there are other campers and they talk about their love of hiking/camping, too. Well, you just have to share about this amazingly awesome trail you discovered this afternoon – right next to your very campsite.
How would your conversation go? What would you say? We won’t get into the nuts and bolts of a conversation here but suffice it to say you would be excited.
Not only that, your conversation would be casual, comfortable and fun. After all, you’re there enjoying the great outdoors together in a communal environment, soaking up nature.
When you share what you discovered, everyone is intrigued and wants to see those same things, too. Why? It’s the love of the adventure, but more importantly, it’s because you have a camaraderie, a high comfort level with each other, a familiarity stemming from your love for camping.
Did you know it’s that easy to tell a story for a potential client or customer.
What is the point of motivation? That’s what we’re after. Not when they’re already deep into discovery about a particular purchase. While we can retrieve someone from that or guide them down a different path…if we can get them and/or show them a unique idea, get them to think in a certain direction from the beginning of their journey, voila.
How do we build the story?
Back to our camping friends. Sitting around a fire, having something to eat, or warming ourselves, talking about our day.
What about our BIG idea? With camping it’s our cool and awesome path? The big idea in a sales letter is one leading to a greater adventure, a better solution, removes pain, reinforces someone’s importance to themselves.
There ‘ya go. How do we talk to people we don’t even know like that?
That’s where studying and demographics, data, what someone in the particular position needs, wants, wants to accomplish…
We develop a persona. Once we feel familiar with that person; what they want to buy, eat, drive, what motivates them to do what they do, then we envision ourself with them, out and about; eating, buying, learning, growing.
And today with the internet and the explosion of ideas, trends, personalities, it can be even easier to see and read what motivates people. They are putting themselves out there for all to see. Take the time and read and learn.
We don’t always have to rely on “cold” data. We can get real time life goals, dreams, dislikes, cravings, happiness, from the very people we are trying to reach. They are talking, are we listening? Are we watching?
We can get to know them quite well. We can envision ourselves with them and like a good friend offer them tailor made directions, solutions for their life, their purchase, their well-being.
Then we can start writing.
We think about them, we feel what they feel and we write to one of our closest friends. When we do, they can’t help but read what we’re writing. They want to know what it is; what’s at the end of that path up the hill and between those two mountains awaiting us. Something beyond what they imagined this morning when they woke up.
The big idea, the point of motivation.
We have the solution. We have what they need. What we need is for them to read what we have to share and stay engaged long enough to be blown away by all of the goodies we offer.
When they read, we are just like them. It could sound like a conversation on the phone, over lunch, at the camp site. As we write, we see them saying, “Yea, that’s what I was thinking”, “That’s exactly what I’ve been looking for…”
Take the time to dive deep into our newfound friend’s mystique, their persona, what makes them tick. You might even find you’re having a blast at the same time. You might even start to write as if you’ve known them for years. Hallelujah!
Enjoy all of your new “friends” as you write and engage with them on wonderful journeys.
I’ve noticed a trend in the internet world of today and perhaps so have you. It’s the fake friend, to get your email, to bombard you with high priced goods trend.
Sadly, someone noticed how well this idea works several years ago and sold it to just about everyone who wants to make money online. Now you can’t look at anybody’s information without first relinquishing your email information.
Of course, that will get you exclusive access to a video presentation (normally) showing you how you can make more money selling Volcanic Indonesian rocks, or any such stuff. Now, I know we all said to ourselves in the initial pouring over the primary information, “Well now, that actually looks good. I guess it can’t hurt to take a look.”
We were enticed, and that can be o.k. It’s what sales is about, getting to us in a way that makes us want to say, “yes”. But…the video we watched, while it had some good information was relatively incomplete. Near the end of the presentation, we watched as the presenter got even more excited about whatever life-changing thing they were showing.
Only $2000.00. That’s a steal considering all you will get. OOPS, they forgot to tell you the package you bought would come with dozens of emails talking about the upsell. Sure your purchase will be good, but if you could only see how much greater and how much more personalized access I’ll give you with this addition to the program you just bought…
Wait a minute! I was told this (very expensive) program was the end all and be all of my wants, dreams, desires.
Any of this sound familiar? Thought so.
Why do we use words? We use them to connect with people. We use them to persuade people. Ultimately we should be using them to help people.
How about we get to know people and find out if we can honestly help them with something. If I am a copywriter (which I am) and I am having a grand time with several contacts, it is only a matter of time before the topic of how I can help them with my writing comes up. And even then it won’t be a hard sell.
I know, I know, there are those out there who will accuse me of leaving money on the table, wasting perfectly good opportunities…
Am I out to use people just so I can make more money, or am I out to provide a service, friendship, perhaps an outlet for them to make money?
Here’s a novel, new, revolutionary idea. Let’s treat people with love and respect. Let’s let our relationships develop honestly and rejoice that we have more and more good people with which to interact and enjoy life.
Openings, opportunities, money-making ventures, collaborations will all happen. But this way they will happen and everyone wins, not just the one who harasses their email list the hardest and gets some high dollar courses sold this weekend.
Let’s think about our words, let’s use them for good – for building up, for encouraging, for easing the tensions of an already out of control world.
Studies show that in 2017 the number of text messages that were sent in the United States every day was about 26 billion. Wow, 26 billion!
And then in 2020 another study showed that the number of emails sent and received worldwide every day was over 306 billion. Over 306 billion emails sent and received worldwide every day!
There are also innumerable social media posts made daily as well as letters being mailed around the world.
Simply put, there is an almost incomprehensible number of words being communicated every day. And that doesn’t include spoken conversations that are taking place.
What does this mean to your emails, sales letters, case studies, white papers?
We want to be careful with our words. We need to think through what we say and how we say it. And this can be challenging with all the information that comes at us and at them on a daily basis.
Our customers have specific needs, desires, wants, pains. How do we solve them unless we can connect with them via words; words written to their heart, to them personally?
Just think though, how many avenues we/you have to reach out to anyone just about anywhere.
Emails — direct mail – texts – LinkedIn – Facebook – Twitter — Instagram.
Then there’s SlideShare – Pinterest – Youtube — Tik Tok — and a host of new and upcoming platforms to interact on.
With a careful study of your customers, you can “get to know” them and craft or have someone skilled in the art of crafting copy…
…reach them with stories, anecdotes, facts, testimonials, promises, proof – showing what you have to offer is exactly what they need in their life, right now.
Words mean a lot. Carefully chosen and well written words have the potential to solve problems, change the course of someone’s life, increase your success as a business owner, illuminate everyone involved in a positive and impactful way.
Let’s enjoy our words. They can and do work. Have fun finding those who love words and love to craft them so others’ lives can be improved.
The practical side of personal preparedness and the commonsense side of home defense, and the need for both.
These blogs will be small snippets of quality information that go a lot farther than 60 minutes of “Oh my God, will you please get to the point!”
Let’s get in get it done and get out. Now go practice and have fun with what you just saw or read.
Everyone likes the romantic idea of being the kingly protector of their domain. And they should. But there are a lot of nuts and bolts we need to put in place to get there.
What? Sure, jumping through the air yelling out your best war cry while dramatically delivering a sweeping blow from a Samurai sword while at the same time firing three or four perfectly aimed shots from your custom engraved combat pistol. All before you ever hit the ground and without tripping or running headlong into the doorjamb at 3 o’clock in the morning — because it’s dark.
How do we perfect us? How do we learn how to be aware of our surroundings? How do we plan for and execute a good plan in keeping our family safe?
One book I recommend highly is Defensive Living. Written by Ed Lovette and Dave Spaulding.
You can find this tremendous work at Looseleaf Law Publications: to make sure you get the correct copy. Looseleaflaw.com
It is the best succinct body of knowledge I have found, helping you put things into practice right now. How to self-aware, aware of your surroundings, aware ahead of time. It’s a short read, only 96 pages.
Why don’t I just tell you all the things in the book?
1 – Why reinvent the wheel?
2 – We will cover topics from the book, but think of it as a textbook, like in college.
The teacher covers the framework, then you get to go home and work in more detail on your own. I am empowering you to take control of where you want to go when it comes to protecting you and your home/family. How bad do you want it?
Stay tuned for more in the next post. Thanks for reading.
Welcome again to:
Practical home Defense
We’ll get into a main topic in the book Defensive Living – “Cooper’s Color Codes”.
Who is Jeff Cooper and why should you care? Jeff Cooper was an American Marine credited with creating the modern technique of handgun shooting. He is also renowned as an expert of history and use of small arms. * And the human response to critical situations * – which is where we’re going.
These Color Codes are covered in a ton of self-defense books, studies on Law Enforcement, even in some Martial arts circles; so what I ‘m sharing isn’t exclusive information. But it is very useful. Useful in knowing how our bodies react in various situations.
Next are two are two charts: The first shows how the colors are defined and the second shows our physiological response via heart rate. Take a minute and look over the different colors and corresponding attributes of each. We’ll cover them in just a minute.
If something catastrophic takes place while you’re in condition White and you haven’t done anything to prepare yourself against any aggression, it’s very likely you’ll to race into condition Black. That’s bad.
What is white? Sleeping, watching a movie with your family, being absorbed in your phone screen. Basically, not too aware of your surroundings or not having the necessary training to handle anything should something come up.
Condition Black: Where you never want to be.
Condition Black loves people who say,
“Oh, that will never happen to me.”
“Nothing like this ever happens in this neighborhood.”
Or, “I’ve been here doing…for 20 years and nothing like that has ever happened…”
Whoops! Wrong. You are a prime candidate for condition Black – and — dead.
Why these charts at all? So you can have an idea of what to expect when you encounter a critical situation. So you’re not surprised when it’s difficult to breathe, your hands sweat and tremble and you face that decision…
The point just this side of the line in the sand you drew: that someone is now crossing over.
With training and adopting the mindset of “When this happens, this is what I will do…” You can be in that place where you come out the winner and the other individual? Well, let’s just say they’ll at least seriously regret the decision to think you or your family was an easy target.
Our world is unpredictable. You can be inert (Foolish) or unconcerned. Or, scared.
Or you can be prepared and confident that you have the skills, foresight and flexibility to confront and adapt to any situation.
Oh yes, the rest of the colors:
Yellow: Where we can be every day. Like a Police officer on the job. Able to be aware for extended periods of time without burnout. Ready to respond. Or, while driving, actively looking for the “out” at intersections, scanning ahead for road anomalies, advanced time to react smoothly and safely.
Orange: Police officer ready for action at a traffic stop. Nothing yet, but an unknown situation calling for much more vigilance.
Kind of like the hand slapping game you may have played as a kid. You hold your hands out, palms up and your opponent places their hands down on yours. You try and flip your hands over and slap theirs while they try to get out of the way without being slapped. You are both on edge just a bit, ready to move.
Red: This is where Fight or Flight takes place. If you have prepared yourself, you can be here, take care of business even while your pulse rate goes up to around 150 or so. Your fine motor skills deteriorate (Natural reaction. Your body is pulling blood to your major muscle groups for large fast hard movements.)
BUT this is where training comes into play. We’ll cover that later.
Black: Shut down and don’t know why. Soiling yourself. Becoming the perfect victim.
Decide right now to be ready – doing what it takes so the outcome favors you, your family, your home.
See you next time. We’ll start getting into those training things that condition us for the unknown.
We saw earlier that time is inert; is it and we get to utilize it in any way we choose. One thing that we (As humans) tend to forget is the amount of time it takes to get results or really good at something.
Take for instance a great professional basketball player, or football player, or a professional pistol competitor. We watch them in awe, perhaps even get excited to do some of the same things we just looked at and go and start on a new adventure. After two or three times or a couple of weeks we aren’t nearly as good as the people we watched and we may get disappointed. Well, I put in 100% all this new time.
What we have been deluded into is not realizing how many years, how many fundamental actions those people have performed (Often failing along the way) before we got to see them on TV. How about great guitar players. Some may have heard of Steve Vai. Phenomenal is a gross understatement. When he was younger, he would lock himself into his room and not let himself out until he felt he mastered a particular technique. How many times did he do that I wonder?
So, our emotions and excitement and goal setting are to be complimented and praised. And they need to be augmented with discipline and LOTS of patience.
We will get to where we want to be; it is guaranteed if we stay constant and not allow ourselves to be swayed away from our vision. It’s OK if things take awhile; it gives us time to assimilate the journey and actually enjoy all of the blessings along the way.
Enjoy YOUR journey. Enjoy deciding what will enrich and enhance your life and enjoy the whole process of time.