Wednesday, February 20, 2019

10 Perfect Books on Copywriting for Writers

Copywriting can take years to master, but in today's digitally run marketing world, you can earn a serious income by creating online content.

For anyone looking down new avenues of writing, or maybe just wanting to dip their toes in the copywriting pond.

Here are 10 perfect books on copywriting for writers:

1. The Copywriter's Handbook: A Step-By-Step Guide to Writing Copy That Sells By Robert W. Bly

Freelance copywriter specializing in business-to-business, high-tech and direct advertising, Robert W. Bly, reveals dozens of copywriting techniques that can help you write ads, commercials, and direct mail that are clear, persuasive, and get more attention, so you can sell more products.  In his new revised third edition he includes essential information for mastering copywriting in the Internet era, and includes advice on Web- and e-mail- based copywriitng.

2. The Copywriting Bible: 100+ Viral Outlines to Build Your Brand By Josh Fechter

Founder of BAMF Media, Josh Fechter brings you content marketing through storytelling.  Showing you how to create emotion with your readers and push through the noise to help you stand out.

3. The Adweek Copywriting Handbook: The Ultimate Guide to Writing Powerful Advertising and Marketing Copy from One of America's Top Copywriters By Joseph Sugarman

Legendary copywriter Joseph Sugarman provides you with proven guidelines and expert advice on what it takes to write a copy that will entice, motivate, and move customers to buy.

4. Persuasive Copywriting: Using Psychology to Influence, Engage and Sell By Andy Maslen

Andy Maslen Managing Director of Sunfish, a copywriting agency, uses psychology, emotion, and a pinch of neuroscience.  Presenting 25 psychological techniques.  Along with 110 words and phrases that trigger emotions, over 10 real-world case studies, and 75 practical exercises to help writers who've already mastered the basics, write enjoyable, compelling copy which makes a mark in today's busy marketplace. Covering topics like: how to make spending money look like a privilege, the ancient Greek secret of emotionally engaging copy, when to use pictures instead of words, how to use the right tone of voice, and avoiding common copywriting traps.

5. Contagious: Why Things Catch On By Jonah Berger

Associate professor of marketing at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, Jonah Berger, explains why certain products and ideas become popular.  Contagious, Berger informs the reader of the secret science behind word-of-mouth and social transmission.  Showing how six basic principles drive all sorts of things to become contagious.  

6. Copywriting: Successful Writing for Design, Advertising and Marketing By Mark Shaw

Professional copywriter of over 25 years, Mark Shaw, employs simple techniques to craft strong written content with ease.  Including insightful interviews from leading copywriters, as well as illustrated case studies of major brands, in this new expanded editionTeaching the art of writing great copy for digital media, branding, marketing and, retailing, catalogs, company magazines, and internal communications.

7. Breakthrough Copywriting: How to Generate Quick Cash with the Written Word By David Garfinkel

Acclaimed creator of Copywriters Podcast David Garfinkel, teaches you how to shatter sales records with the written word.  Breakthrough Copywriting makes everything simple, by breaking it down into a step-by-step process.  Experienced marketers will benefit from new strategies and tactics that will show how to build a powerful sales message that makes money, get insider secrets for "amping up" emotional power of your copy, and more....

8. Words that Sell: More than 6000 Entries to Help You Promote Your Products, Services and Ideas By Richard Bayan

Award winning advertising copywriter Richard Bayan, shows you a better way to say "authentic" words, giving you 57 alternatives.  Fully updated and expanded this copywriting classic is packed full of inspiration for busy professionals who need to win customers, by mail, online, or in person.

9. How to Write Copy That Sells: The Step-By-Step System for More Sales, to More Customers, More Often By Ray Edwards

Communications strategist and copywriter for some of the most powerful voices in leadership and business, Ray Edwards shows you how to write copy without sounding "salesy".  Taking you through a step-by-step guide to writing fast, easy-to-read, effective copy.  For anyone writing copy that needs to make money - including copywriters, freelancers and entrepreneurs.

10. This is Marketing: You Can't Be Seen Until You Learn to See By Seth Godin

International bestsellling author, Seth Godin, offers the core of his marketing wisdom in one compact, accessible, timeless package.  Showing you how to reframe your product or service and present it to the world and, to connect meaningfully with the people who want it.

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Monday, February 18, 2019

Remarkable Jobs of Literary Greats, Before They Were Famous

Many successful writers started out in strange and sometimes even degrading work.  While most people would be sapped of all inspiration, many great authors and poets were stimulated enough to write some of their greatest work. Here are 10 remarkable jobs of the literary greats:

1. Stephen King

Acclaimed author found inspiration for Carrie while he was working as a high school janitor.  King originally threw away his first draft of the story but fortunately wife Tabitha wanted him to continue writing the story because she wanted to know how it ended.

2. Margaret Attwood

The Handmaid's Tale  author Margaret Attwood started out as a cash register clark, handling both the register and her ill-mannered boyfriend who would visit her just for a look.

3. Harper Lee

Harper Lee started out as an airline reservations clark, before her friends supported her financially, so she could write full-time.

4. John Steinbeck

Had many odd and strange jobs before becoming a full-time writer: fruit picker, apprentice painter, estate caretaker and a construction worker at Madison Square Garden.

5. Douglas Adams

Many writer's take on work just to make ends meet, and Adams was no exception.  While working as a bodyguard for a wealthy Arabian family, he also wrote for radio shows and Monty Python.

6. Neil Gaiman

When his short stories weren't being picked up for publication, Gaiman became a freelance journalist, learning about the publishing world from the inside.

7. Agatha Christie

Agatha Christie had a vast knowledge of poisons, which isn't surprising when you discover she was an assistant apothecary.

8. J.D.Salinger

Before The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger worked as an entertainment director on the H.M.S. Kungsholm, a Swedish luxury liner.  He was writing and publishing short stories during this time.

9. Ken Kesey

Author of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest Ken Kesey got his inspiration for the book while working as a janitor in a mental hospital, along with his experience participating in a CIA study called MKULTRA, while a student at Stanford University.

10. Jack London

London would steal and resell oysters from the West Coast, because they were in such high demand.  The term "oyster pirate" was mentioned numerous times throughout his work.

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Friday, February 15, 2019

How to Extinguish Your Competition on Five Social Media Sites With Fotor

Social Media Statistics You Should Know

  1. 3 billion people are using social media, and this number goes up every year. (Smart Insights).
  2. Every second 11 new people will use social media for the first time.  (Skyword).
  3. 90% of marketers gained greater exposure through social media.  (Ignite Visibility).

Don't Get Lost in the Noise

If you haven't done one already, create your own simple social media marketing plan that will make your followers sit up and take notice. 

Fotor's online design maker will help make your graphics look more polished, and get you the attention your blog or website deserves.

Use Fotor to exhibit your blog content with professional flair, through your social media accounts.

In this article discover an actionable plan that will optimize your social media sites, on Pinterest, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and LinkedIn.

With a Secure Social Media Plan You Can:

  1. Build relationships with your followers and customers
  2. Create and design graphics that are applicable to your website message.
  3. Target your blog content to social media sites that your followers frequent.

I'm going to show you how to employ all three of the above strategies in this blog post.

Blog Logo

Use Vibrant Graphics in Your Blog Marketing

People are naturally drawn to images that spark the imagination, this is why memes, infographics and graphics in general are so popular.  Tools such as Fotor can help and aid you in your graphic design, and even your company logo.

With a professional logo, it will looked like you hired a professional designer.

Figure Out Where Your Target Audience Is

This means you don't have to be on all of them.  A common mistake by many bloggers is to assume you need to be on all of the major social media sites.

There are plenty of options with social media: Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram.  Not everyone is comfortable on all of these sites, do your own research before you sign up, to discover which ones suit your purpose the best.

Pinterest Tips

Pinterest Post
Size matters, along with how you display your graphics.  Pinterest prefers vertical graphics and bright colours that easily catch the eye.

Get your brand noticed with strong images that showcase your blog. People like to shop for brands through Pinterest, create images to draw people into buy your products.

You can advertise on Pinterest by boosting a Pin.

Active Users on Pinterest over 175 million.

Twitter Tips

You can use your Pinterest post image on Twitter, and give Twitter followers a clear image with your branding.

See above a recent pinned post.

There are various thoughts on posting content, even as much as 10 times a day. 

Handy tip: Keep your most recent blog posts at the top of your feed, that's the place most people will look to retweet your tweets.

Twitter Cover

 Create your own personal Twitter cover with Fotor's templates.

Active Users on Twitter 330 million.

YouTube Tips

YouTube Channel Art

Design your own piece of YouTube Channel Art or video thumbnail with one Fotor's many templates.

YouTube Thumbnail

You can use your thumbnail at the end, or the beginning of your video on YouTube.  Search engines like to cateogorise videos by their thumbnail.  People searching for particular subject will go straight to the most attractive one.

Active Users on YouTube 1 billion.

Instagram Tips

Instagram Post

Fotor will get you the attention you need with it's numerous Instagram templates.

You can extend your visibility when you pay a sponsor to boost your post on Instagram.  Do this by simply pressing "Promote".

Another hot platform for brands, discover 8 things you should know about making money on Instagram:
  • Show relevant photos that match your brand
  • Keep a unified theme throughout
  • Adopt popular hashtags
  • Hold product giveaways
  • Advertise your stories with Instagram stories
  • Create an Instagran Business Account
  • Gain 10,000 visitors to use the "swipe up" feature for website traffic
  • Adopt IGTV to advertise your products
  • Create a compelling bio on your Instagram account
Active users on Instagram 800 million users.

LinkedIn Tips

LinkedIn Background

Create a cool cover with Fotor's LinkedIn templates.  This particular social media site was created for business and professional people alike.  A professional image is required to gain more followers.

Fotor has templates to suit all personalities and businesses.

Make sure your LinkedIn bio is complete, and treat it like a resume to impress.

Join as many relevant LinkedIn groups as you can. and use LinkedIn's blog to post articles regularly.

Active users on LinkedIn 500 million.


In this post you discovered how to:

  • Grow and cultivate lasting bonds with your followers and readers
  • Create graphics that will wow your audience, and deliver a powerful message
  • Target social media sites that your followers frequent the most

All of these methods have been covered above, and will definitely get the attention your website needs.

When your action plan combines Fotor you know it will be much more powerful.

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

10 Best Skillshare Courses for Writers

Learning is part and parcel of the life of many writers, whether it be taking classes at a local college, or looking for something online to fulfil their needs.

Online learning is a huge technological advancement, making it easier than ever for individuals to access some of the finest writing minds.

If you want to expand your writing expertise then check out these 10 courses from Skillshare:

Copywriting Masterclass - Writing that Sells

Doru Catana uses his 5 years in the advertising industry to bring you classic knowledge from the copywriting founders (ogliviy, Caples and Scwab).  To write copy that will make your message more effective, get more sales and allow your story to be told the way it deserves.

The Writer's Toolkit: 6 Steps to a Successful Writing Habit

Award winning and bestselling author Simon Van Booy, walks writers of all kinds through a 40 minute class using a simple process that makes writing approachable and fun.  Ideal for aspiring writers, authors and enthusiasts for a creative outlet.

Creative Writing Essentials: Writing Stand-Out Opening Scenes

New York Times bestsellling author Daniel Jose Older shows you how to craft a compelling opening scene for your story.  His case study is the first and last opening scene for his urban fantasy novel Shadowshaper.  Breaking down the anatomy of a scene, providing clear and useful exercises to help you analyse character, movement, and structure.

Capture Your Writing Ideas: How to Never Lose Track of Blog and Book Ideas

Owner of Professional Content Creation, Rebecca Livermore, shows you how to set up your writing idea capture system.  Covering the pros and cons of both analog and digital tools for your idea capture system.  Sharing some of her favourite analog and digital tools for capturing ideas, and creating your own system that works for you.

Rekindling the Art of Letter Writing

Writing Instructor Christopher Mitchell takes you away from the convenient tools of communication.  Instead going back to personal writing that allows you to slow down and ruminate over the relationships you cherish.  Allowing you to think more deeply and carefully about what to write to the recipient.

Writing Without Fear: Using Life Writing to Free the Writer Within You

If you've every struggled with writer's block and fear of the blank page, Christopher Mitchell will show you how to overcome these frustrations as you learn how to turn your memories into memoirs in this course jam-packed with great information.

Make Your Writing Stand Out in Eight Easy Steps

Writing Professor and Personal Growth Teacher Rachel Leroy, shows you how to improve your writing style, approach, and habits. Broken down into four simple sections, containing strategies to help improve clarity, flow, presentation, and results in your writing.

Writing, Publishing, Marketing and Selling Your First Book

Working alongside some of the biggest names n eCommerce and online marketing, John W. Hayes, has been helping both small and medium sized companies develop their business strategies.  This course is developed to help aspiring writers realise their potential and guide them through the process of writing, publishing, marketing and selling their first book.

Freelance Writing 101: Build a Successful Writing Career

Brad Merrill CEO  of Merrill Media, uses his experience to lay out a step-by-step road map that you can follow to start your own business and get you your first paid writing gig.

DoodleWriting - 5 ways to loosen up and play with your writing

Artist and writer Angelique Noll takes a lighthearted attitude associated with doodling and transfers it into the writing process.  Leaving you free to write and play with your words and ideas.

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Monday, February 11, 2019

How to Write Powerful Headlines

Being able to draw your readers in, just by the article title can be a challenge in itself. Whatever you put out there it, it's always going to be connected to you.

To be a successful writer, understanding the importance of a good headline is paramount.  And taking shortcuts in this particular area of writing, doesn't apply.

The first thing someone will see before they set eyes on your article is the headline. If your article headline doesn't pop on first reading, your blog post won't be read by as many people as you would like.

Here are a list of 10 things to help you create powerful headlines:

1. Accuracy is Key

Your headline should reflect your article, so don't offer 10 steps, when you're headline says 15.

Your readers trust that your headline says exactly what it's going to do.  Don't go overboard in your delivery, too much overselling can be disastrous. 

2. Strike a Chord with Your Readers

To put it simply, make it pop, and have fun with your headline.

Finding the right balance takes time.  Look at other writers and see how they create headlines.  Most importantly get to know your audience and see how far you can push your own boundaries.

3. Stick to the Point

Again do oversell, and stay on point with your title.  By going to overboard, you could frighten your readers away.

A headline of 70 characters or less will be seen more clearly on search engines.  Your title will be cut off if it runs any longer.

4. Create Headlines with Lists

Best of or top 10 article titles draw in an audience faster.  People like articles they can scan through quickly, and don't like to hang around when they're looking for certain information on the internet.

By giving your reader a guide, in your title, they understand how much information there is to look at.

5. Be Educational

The main reasons people seek out information is for help or entertainment.  There's no harm in writing a humorous blog post once in a while.  If your blog is attached to your business humorous posts won't bide well with your readers.

Bloggers have different ways of educating their audience.  People like to learn new things, by adding educational value to your headline you're more likely to get more views.

6. Have a Good Brainstorming Session

Start making notes, to start the brainstorming process.  Having more options will give you more scope as to what you where you want to go with with your article. 

7. Ask Questions Every Now and Again

Asking questions can make your headline even more appealing.  People love to question things and give their own interpretation on things. 

It can be a very effective way of drawing your reader into, because they want to know the answer you're going to give.

8. Put Keywords in Your Headline

Search engines love keywords, adding a few in your headline will help you move up in the search engine rankings.

9. Add Some Feeling

Adding some emotional depth will make your article even more compelling, and leave your readers wanting more.  Writing isn't just about being grammatically correct.

A connection needs to be made between the author and the reader of the article.  By adding some depth of feeling to the headline, your article will automatically become clickbait to readers.

10. Be Bold

You want your headline to drip with confidence.  Your readers need to be convinced that you know what you're talking about, and that the article they're reading is extraordinary,  and will in some way challenge their lives.  Engaging with your audience is the endgame, that's when you know you're winning the battle.

I'd love to hear your thoughts about headlines in the comments section below.

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Friday, February 08, 2019

How to Get Awesome Reviews for Your Book

The Importance of a Book Review

As an unknown author book reviews are a great help in generating sales.  Any future readers will put your name on their list, especially if you're book has generated good reviews.

Any product bought online sells better after a few good reviews.  Reviews from people who like your work will carry you far, and even bad reviews will tell you whether your book was worth reading.  Even bad reviews can tell you how you stand as a writer, but in the long, will help you improve your writing.

So how do unknown authors get their readers to review their books?

Word of mouth is what is going to sell your book, the more people that like it, the more people will buy your book. 

Here are a list of 5 ways you can ensure your book will be reviewed:

1. End Your Book With a Call-to-Action

A few simple sentences at the end of your book Example, If you enjoyed this book, please consider leaving a review in Amazon.

2. Cultivate Online Relationships with Your Audience

Book reviews come because people start to trust you as an authority.  This takes time to cultivate, so don't expect immediate book reviews.

3. Give Your Book Away for Free

Amazon is the best example of this, every 90 days you can give your book away for free for 5 days.  How you use the 5 days is up to you.  The more eyes you have reading your book, the more chance you have of getting your book reviewed and bought.

4. Ask Your Subscribers

Ask your subscribers to review your book in your email newsletter.  Again, incorporate a call-to-action with your email, giving them the opportunity to review, after they've downloaded a free copy. 

5.  Use Your Social Media Accounts

If you're already on social media, try creating conversations with your followers and then ask them for a review.

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Why Writing Can Be So Difficult Sometimes

Start writing, no matter what.  The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on. 
- Louis L'Amour

Every writer finds the process of writing hard. 

It can feel like a painful process when you're deciding which word sounds the best, and how it should be placed in a sentence to give more depth and meaning.

For a few it can be seem like a stroll in the park, for other writers it feels like traversing a great mountain.

Here are some of the biggest reasons why writing is so arduous for some writers.

1.  Paralysing Perfectionism

If you've ever tried to write that perfect sentence in the hopes of turning it into a masterpiece, you'll know how impossible it is.

Even the slightest attempt at perfectionism is exhausting, and the result is never what you intended.  Leaving you to feel annoyed and overpowered by the process.  Starting the process knowing that you're too burnt out can leave you feeling even more dejected, stopping any creativity you might have had left.

The only way you can get around this is by writing, even if you feel its not your best work.  By limiting the amount of edits, you know it's the best you could have done.

Tell yourself you can always improve the piece later on, by adding new information, this will keep the perfectionist in you at bay.

2. Irregular Writing Schedule

Don't rely on your muse to show up for inspiration, because you're more likely to get stood up. 

When writing is the only thing on your mind, and you're unable to put pen to paper, you quickly get writer's block and can go days, and even weeks without writing.

Putting time aside to write for 30 minutes each day during the week, will not only boost your creativity levels but also help you write more. 

When you do something regularly, you condition your mind and body to do that activity.  Think of it like this, if you stop riding a bike, and got on one now, you'd be wobbling all over the place.  If you decided to take up bike riding again you'd have your childlike confidence back.

The same goes for writing, you need to use it, so that you don't lose it.

Make a simple writing schedule out for your writing time during the week.  It doesn't have to be everyday.  Just remember you need to stick to it if you want to get the most out of your writing.

3. Fear of Failure

Having the guts to stand up for your own work can be really difficult.

The thought of someone not liking what you've written, and hearing the words, you're a bad writer, can be truly horrendous.

Everyone has an opinion about something, even the best writers were thought of as bad at some point in their writing career, because they didn't follow the rules of grammar or couldn't spell.  The likes of JK Rowling was rejected 12 times before she had ever had a book printed.

I'm sure all of these writers had their feelings put through the ringer regularly, but did it stop them from creating a masterpiece?  No.

You're writing doesn't need to be perfect, you just need to be able to connect with your audience.

Don't be pulled down by all of those negative comments and haters, who probably haven't written anything anyway. 

The more you put yourself out there the easier writing will become, and the more you can start exploring your writing talent.

It Takes Courage to Write

Putting your fingers on the keyboard and writing takes a lot of guts, because your putting your knowledge and reputation on the line.  The important thing is to try.

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Wednesday, February 06, 2019

10 Ways Your Blog is Alienating Your Readers

Blog post Updated 6/2/2019

As a writer your main platform is your blog, if you don't haven't created your own author platform check out this blog post How to Start Your Author Platform from Scratch . Your blog allows you to get your message across, and your voice to be heard. It takes many hours of thought and writing to put words on the screen.

Blogs are being created on a daily basis, by the truck load.  Which makes it more important to understand what attracts your audience and helps retain your followers.

There's nothing wrong with making mistakes along the way, believe me I've made plenty.  You can't make an omelet without breaking eggs.

So keep those thoughts in mind and discover the 10 points I've learnt so far:

1. Posting Sporadically

When I first started my blog, back in March 2015 I was only posting once a week, because I had too many other things going on.  I soon realised that posting once a week wasn't enough for a new blog.

Blogs are very similar to magazines and newspapers, they require fresh content regularly, to keep your readers interested.

2. Posting too Often

Posting too frequently also has it's downsides, it can seem like a lot of information to be taking in when you post that frequently.  You need to find a pace of posting you can manage and that your readers feel comfortable with.

3. Leave Your Comments On

Interacting with your audience can be difficult, but I encourage all bloggers to leave their comments on, and reply to comments that are relevant to your blog.

4. Don't be too Abrasive

There's nothing wrong with a droll or sarcastic post every once in a while.  But doing it too often may make your readers feel uncomfortable.  Keep it light and you can't get go wrong.

5. Create Awesome Images for Your Blog

Quality images throughout your blog is key to holding your audiences attention, and creating your own particular style.  Your blog needs to be attractive and easy to get around.

6. Stick to Your Genre

Stay close to home, when it comes to blog topics.  For instance if your blog is about cars, don't talk about dogs.  Blogging about anything that comes into your head only works if your blog is focused on different subjects.  Otherwise you confuse your readers. Be creative, dig deep, and your sure to find plenty to talk about.

7. Visit Other Blog's

Check out other bloggers who write in the same genre as you.  This way you can glean new ideas, and get to know what's going on in your corner of the web.  The blogging community is about give and take.  Each blog I visit, is a valuable source of information and ideas, so add other bloggers links to your post and share the blog love:)

8. Comment Thoughtfully

Only comment on other peoples blogs if you have something encouraging to say, or worth sayingBlogging is all about sharing and discovery, not advertising your own blog.

9. Don't Bore Your Readers

Your audience doesn't need to read 3,000 word articles all of the time, vary the lenght of your posts. It's clear that people don't have the attention span they used to have, so try writing blog posts of varying lengths. 

10. Don't be Self-Indulgent

Great bloggers are those who share content from other bloggers.

Make sure you join Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest to promote your your posts.  

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.