Zena Ryder's Reviews > Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content

Everybody Writes by Ann Handley
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really liked it

If you’re new to writing the blog for your business, or if you haven’t written anything longer than a shopping list since college, or if you want to brush up on your rusty writing skills for any reason, there are some helpful tips in here. For example, her tips for writing a blog post are spot on. Here’s my infographic that adapts and summarizes her advice: https://bit.ly/2N5htbE

But if you’re at a stage in your writing career where you’re already used to doing the things she mentions, of course you’ll find her book less helpful. Still, I found the odd thing that I like to be reminded of. For example, checking if I’ve used an [adverb + ordinary verb] construction that can be replaced with a more interesting or exciting verb without an adverb. This by itself can improve a piece of writing.

Handley is also pretty much saving the world with her advice to avoid business buzzwords. More people should read her book just so that the rest of us can look forward to seeing fewer instances of words like ‘leverage’, ‘incentivize’, and ‘value-added’! I also loved her emphasis on saying what is true and checking your facts. Yes, it’s ‘just’ a blog post; but, yes, it does matter whether or not what you’re saying is true. (Here's my article related to this: https://bit.ly/2p3YEY8)

Handley also provides fantastic lists of tools that will benefit pretty much every writer. There are so many useful tools out there that will help improve your writing, your productivity, or the visual side of a blog post, say. Even if you’re an experienced writer, get your hands on a copy and check out those lists at the end of the book. I’d be surprised if you didn’t find something helpful that’s new to you.

Handley is mostly enjoyable to read. You can really feel her lively personality through the page. But… in parts, the book is a little repetitive. She doesn’t always follow her own advice — and takes a paragraph to say what could be said in a sentence. (Sometimes, she stretches things out for the sake of humour or colour — and that can be a little annoying too, if you just want to get on with it already.)

She also really likes the word ‘grok’, which got irritating. Actually… I just did a search for it in the book (an advantage to having finally switched to an e-reader!) and it appears only five times. I guess that isn’t too many. I s’pose it’s just me: I don’t like that word. Goes to show, you can’t please all your readers all the time. :)
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Reading Progress

September 3, 2018 – Started Reading
September 10, 2018 – Finished Reading
September 12, 2018 – Shelved

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