Really, Airbnb? Really?

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I’ve just completed a wonderful Airbnb stay with a gracious host — along with an incredible Airbnb outdoor experience. But once these transactions were done, Airbnb committed a heinous blunder that soured me on the whole concept. My hosts in San Diego promised a four-bedroom house with a well-equipped kitchen — and delivered exactly what … Continued

Writing, printing, and permanence

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Words make pages, which make books. Behind that simple statement is the rich history of the mechanisms of printing. My personal history is a thread in the the broader history of the methods by which words reach the eyes of the reader — a narrative that came to life for me when I recently visited … Continued

Airbnb and the joy of imperfect travel

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I’m on a short vacation right now, visiting with family. I’m staying in an Airbnb and I just had one of Airbnb’s local “experiences.” Stuff has gone wrong. And it’s glorious. If business travel is about comfort and predictability, leisure travel is, at least for me, about having unique, memorable, highly local experiences. My wife … Continued

A retrospective, as Without Bullshit nears 1 million words

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I started writing Without Bullshit in March of 2015. I have posted every weekday since then. While this may be a sign of mental illness, it is certainly represents a degree of commitment. Thanks for taking this journey along with me. Today I look back a bit. Without Bullshit (the blog) now includes 1,027 posts, … Continued

A year of ghostwriting

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I made a good living as a ghostwriter in 2018. Is that who I am now? When I stopped working for a company and became independent three years ago, a prominent ghostwriting agency reached out to me. I told the owner, “I do not ghostwrite books for others.” But to keep an open mind, I … Continued

How to lose a sale successfully

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When you pitch business, what do you do when you lose? I make sure that every sale I lose is a win. This question came up again this week when a lead — a guy who heard about me on a podcast — contacted me about improving some prominently placed copy on his Web site. … Continued

A holiday wish

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30 years ago a new person came into my life. 23 years ago another. Nearly 20 years ago, another. None of these people became who I imagined them to be. They have surprised me. But all of them have enriched me beyond belief. My family is my touchstone. What I wish for you is not … Continued

At Tesla, the customer experience falls far short of the car

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I bought a Tesla. The experience of buying it was terrible. Analyzing the reasons for this is a great exercise in thinking through customer experience. This is not my first electric car. I’m a believer. Six years ago, I bought a Nissan Leaf. My family has been very happy with it. The maintenance costs are … Continued