Tom Brady isn’t retiring

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Tom Brady, the greatest NFL quarterback of all time, announced yesterday that he was retiring, “for good.” Bullshit. Oh, sure, there were a thousand headlines about it and unlike last year at this time, it appears Tom actually won’t be playing in the National Football League any more. But he’s not retiring. Is he going … Continued

AI sales copy insanity: idiocy at scale

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AI can write now, but it needs supervision. And failing to supervise it will make you look very stupid. Don’t believe me? My friend Maggie Langrick, the proprietor of the hybrid publisher Wonderwell, recently received this financing pitch, which she has allowed me to share with you. From: Tanner SyftestadDate: January 31, 2023 at 6:21:22 … Continued

What would your mother say?

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When I was an analyst, we had an opportunity to accomplish a goal by, shall we say, a means that not everyone would agree was ethical. I asked my boss what I should do. “I always answer these questions like this,” he said. “If everyone knew what you did, would you still feel okay about … Continued

Coauthor or ghostwriter?

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“Seeking a ghostwriter or coauthor,” the email subject line read. Make up your mind, I thought. Because those are two very different roles. A coauthor works with you, while a ghostwriter works for you. How to decide if you want a coauthor or a ghostwriter I get it. You think you need writing help. But … Continued

Why editorial costs vary so much

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“How much will it cost for you to help me with my book?” you ask. “It depends,” I answer. I know that’s frustrating. Here’s what affects that cost — and how you can work cost-effectively. Why talent costs vary I price by the job, not by the hour. But behind the scenes, I am estimating … Continued

PagerDuty sends the worst layoff email ever written

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We have a new winner. In this season of tens of thousands of tech layoffs, I thought Twitter’s short, insensitive, anonymous layoff email was the worst possible. I was so wrong. PagerDuty CEO Jennifer Tejada laid off 7% of the company’s workforce with an email that included this impressive list of sins: And . . … Continued

Ask Dr. Wobs: How do you get people to read to the bottom?

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I recently received this query from a loyal reader: In an era where merit is accorded on the basis of social media ‘likes’ and increasing numbers of TLTR [too longer to read] messages I would like to (read) your comments on how to get the audience to ‘read to the bottom.’ Good question. Is “read … Continued

Slideware

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I’m currently writing some serious business content for a company that has many, many PowerPoint presentations about its ideas. I want to be clear here. This is not a complaint. The ideas are good. The slides are good. And I am certain that the people delivering the presentations were effective in persuading their audiences about … Continued