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Engaging Writing – A Doug Stern Video for Writers

Doug Stern, who is becoming a favorite of mine on YouTube, talks about editing to get more engaging copy in this short video.

What are your techniques to make your writing more engaging?

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{ 5 comments… add one }
  • jorgekafkazar

    Yeah, Doug looks like a really nice guy, easy to work with. But I think his sample text could use improvement:

    “The players associations of major sports leagues needed advice on tax issues and players contracts. We helped them protect their financial assets, including analysis of deferred compensation arrangements and negotiation of agreements with state and municipal taxing authorities.”

    At first reading, “analysis of…arrangements” and “negotiation of agreements…” seem to modify financial assets But no. They modify the earlier clause, we helped them. Better would be:

    “The players associations of major sports leagues needed advice on tax issues and players contracts. We helped them protect their financial assets by/b including analysis of deferred compensation arrangements and by/b negotiation of agreements with state and municipal taxing authorities.”

    His overall point is valid, and the apostrophes are perhaps moot, but he has a sentence that boils down to: “We helped them, including analysis…and negotiation….”

    • Anne

      Suspect you’re right and I’ve never ever run into a piece of writing that couldn’t be improved on.

      • jorgekafkazar

        Yeah, for sure, including getting the html right.

        I saw a dozen binders in our publications room once, ready to mail to the client. I thought, those covers look really great. Next thought: they look so good, I’ll bet no one has proofed them. Sure enough, a line on the spines indentified the work as “Revison Six.” Oy.

  • I follow his blog as well. He’s a pretty nice guy and has some great insights. To be engaging I try to let my passion come through in my words. Doesn’t always work but it’s a start lol.
    Christopher recently posted..How to Make Your Business Stand Out Like Jeff DunhamMy Profile

    • Anne

      Christopher, the only thing I’ve ever found that “always” works is to keep writing… 😉

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