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    Home Articles

    Show, Don't Tell

    A good writer knows to restrict narrative and emphasise action. We all think in images, so it is unsurprising that we respond best when the image is clear.

    'Jane slammed the door so hard that dust billowed out of the frame.' is far more powerful (and interesting) than 'Jane slammed the door.'

    Painting mental images in the mind's of the audience is not just the preserve of fiction writers. It is a powerful tool in the hands of a good salesperson, and a vital technique in any form of public speaking.

    For example, a sales rep for a cookie company wouldn't go into a store and describe the cookies. He would hand the buyer a sample and while it was being eaten, wax lyrical about the unique properties and popularity.

    In a presentation, how much stronger it is to say something like: 'Every day we sell to more people than visit Disneyland' rather than 'Sales reached 120,000 per day.'

    People remember colorful facts long after all the rest of your words have been forgotten.

    I will always remember a presentation from the London society magazine 'Harper's and Queen.' The presenter (who I have completely forgotten) said that the magazine counted more heads of state and members of royal families amongst its subscribers than any other magazine in the world. That statement may have been a complete fabrication, but it painted a clear picture of the magazine that I have never forgotten.

    Paint pictures in your writing - web sites, sales letters, presentations, sales stories - and your message will be equally unforgettable.

    Copyright © Martin Avis

    Martin Avis publishes a free weekly newsletter, BizE-Zine - your unfair advantage in Internet marketing, business and personal success. To subscribe, and get 6 great free gifts, please visit http://www.BizE-zine.com.

    The Authentic Self: Journaling Your Joys, Griefs and Everything in Between by Shery Russ



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    For excerpts, reviews and what you need to do to receive the 2 free e-books, Write Memories and sign up for free e-mail courses, just head on to the Weekly Writes Book Official Site. (Clicking on the link will open a new window.)

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