Mamet vs. Spiderman and the Perils Of Expositional Writing

I cite David Mamet’s “master class memo on writing” so often I’ve probably worn a groove in the Internet. It’s must reading if you haven’t seen it — witty, insightful, profane … terribly punctuated. I was reminded it of it again by, of all things, a Spiderman comic. Now I don’t read the newspaper comics […]

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Start Your Presentations With a Bang Instead of a Whimper

In my writing classes at the Second City Training Center, we were assigned to come in each week with a 5-to-7-page sketch to present for the class and instructor’s dissection. (That was every week for nearly a year-and-a-half, by the way.) One day the instructor had us take the first two pages of our sketches […]

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Information is for Idiots

The reason most business writing is boring is that it demands so little of the reader. That is, it settles for merely conveying information. That’s fine, I suppose, if you’re writing an instruction manual (but even those could use a little more humor and drama). The problem is captured  in David Mamet’s duly famous memo to […]

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Now on Sale

  I’m not a big fan of traditional business books. I think I got to #4 in the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People before bailing. (Maybe that says something about my effectiveness.) So when I set out to write my own book, I was determined to make it the kind of book I would […]

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