Collaborator, Coauthor, or Ghostwriter? How to Decide Which You Need

Early in my career, I collaborated with CEO Jim on his business book. After I’d completed the first draft and he reviewed it, we sat together to discuss a few revisions. Primarily, he wavered over whether to include this or that anecdote collected from an interview with a client or staff member. His wife didn’t [...]

Communication Zingers to Avoid in Your Presentations and Email

Words to Avoid... In a presentation or an email, it’s typically not the big things but the small missteps that damage relationships—particularly when it comes to blocking receptivity. Of course, as the speaker or writer, you’re focused on substantive matters like strategy, structure, and facts. Yet think of all the recent political and business blow-ups [...]

Have You Lost Your Writer’s Voice?

My blind friend Armand recognizes me and others in our circle by voice. He has no problem knowing who has joined the conversation once they speak because all our voices sound distinct. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said of many of those white papers, website pages, and ebooks that you download for free. Many sound [...]

10 Grammar Mistakes That Drive Your Friends Nuts

I recently posted this note on my Facebook page: He: "I'll try and call before the weekend." Me: (thinking) "He'll try TO call before the weekend." Does anybody else have a grammar-auto-correct button that was installed in their brain by an English teacher or parent? Within a few hours, a loooong list of pet peeves [...]

7 Hacks to Improve Your Writing

Not everyone wants to be a novelist. Most people would settle for writing a text message without the auto-correct feature turning an accurately spelled word into an amazingly stupid substitute. Here are a few hacks to help you write better emails, reports, proposals, or marketing copy: Think First. Great writing flows from great thinking. Some [...]