Influencers, Tik-Tok, Grammers, pop-ups, car crash lawyers, those awful pharma ads…

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Photo by Andre Benz on Unsplash

Years ago they predicted marketing and advertising overkill. There was a phrase, ‘banner blindness’, that referred to our ability to ignore banner ads on websites. It seems so quaint to me now, that people hated a static banner on a page. Because marketers doubled down and doubled down again with every annoying intrusion into our attention span imaginable.

B2B gets it, B2C? Not so much

I don’t think anyone is blind to this deluge of crap, but frankly I don’t think they care. There are so many things vying for our attention that it becomes a fog without definition. I’ve been a B2B marketing person for years…

Adhering to the status quo is unhealthy

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Photo: taken by an eccentric

“Precisely because the tyranny of opinion is such as to make eccentricity a reproach, it is desirable that people should be eccentric. Eccentricity has always abounded when and where strength of character has abounded.”

John Stuart Mill, On Liberty

On my bookcase, there is a photo of a painting showing a goofy young man with a martini dangling from his hand. He wears suspenders and a party hat. Across the top appear the words, The Eccentric. The painting was on a large piece on paper that was part of a series painted by a band mate. It highlighted a bunch…

Bird by bird, buddy, bird by bird

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Photo by Andriyko Podilnyk on Unsplash

Spring is not far away. I can tell by the birds. They’re returning to my cold city. They sing outside my window as the sun rises, if you can call that singing. It sounds more like a thousand gossip sessions going on simultaneously. And I’ve started my third novel, still wondering how that works.

The title of this piece is just a little misleading, because after writing two long stories, I’m still in the dark about where they come from. And I’m still insecure enough about their quality that I have not sought an agent, though I think they are…

Five basic French cooking techniques that sound fancy but are incredibly useful

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Photo by Louis Hansel @shotsoflouis on Unsplash

Every cuisine has its specialized techniques and tricks, and French cooking is no exception. Maybe It’s the French language, but their techniques sound more exotic and challenging when you see their French names. Yet, they are basically simple cooking hacks that any type of cuisine can use. I’m going to look at five basic techniques as examples of their refinement as a food culture. There are, of course, many more.

Panade: Squished bread soaked in liquid

A panade is a binder often used in dishes like meatloaf or meatballs to both lighten them and keep the texture moist. It could not be easier. You simply remove…

It’s all in your head, but so is everything else

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Photo by Roby Allario on Unsplash

Are you a head case? Most writers are. We spend a lot of our time trolling about in there looking for ideas, information, and, yes, inspiration. That’s both the source, and the frustration. You know you should write and you’ve got nothing.


Except, that’s baloney and you know it. Here’s why.

First, we can literally write about anything because everything is a metaphor. Look around. Is there a favorite book nearby (there should be). Why is it a favorite? Have you been putting off mopping your kitchen floor? Write about procrastination.

Etc., etc.

Yes, sitting down to write and…

And it’s free

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Photo by Kai Wenzel on Unsplash

If you are a freelance writer, and you are if you write and hope to get paid, you may think the app you use to write is important. If you write fiction, you’ve seen articles about silly writing platforms that only allow you to see the sentence you are working on and other gimmicks. All of these things are not only stupid but may keep you from succeeding as a writer.

Let’s be clear: I write for a living, not to express myself or to work through personal problems. …

And why I don’t remember the name of the place

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Photo by Jorge Gascón on Unsplash

It took me too long to get to Paris. Too many years, too many reasons not to go. Maybe I was afraid it would not live up to my expectations after years of reading and fantasizing about this almost mythical place.

Then, I finally got there.

I don’t remember much about the trip. DeGaulle airport was a mess, having been bombed by terrorists and still under reconstruction. Not having any Euros and searching for an ATM in a construction site so we could pay for a cab. Typical travel stuff.

The first hint that things were different was that cab…

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Photo by Christopher Burns on Unsplash

“Never mistake motion for action.”

Ernest Hemingway

Hemingway was arguably the most visible man of action during the twentieth century. WWI ambulance driver, big game hunter, bullfight aficionado, deep water fisherman, Nobel Prize winner, and btw, perhaps the greatest novelist in his time.

Unfortunately, this was a man of his time, not this time, and he was haunted by demons which led to his final act, taking his own life at 61. Sometimes action may seem like the only option, which is why stopping and thinking about it should be a part of any action plan.

Note: Ken Burns is…

They are not ‘new age’ or touchy-feely

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Photo by Geoffrey Moffett on Unsplash

I’m not sure whether it’s Covid fatigue or simply burnout from the constant crazy news, which I’ve watched obsessively for a year, but I need calming entertainment. No, I’m not watching video of fireplaces or soothing scenery. But I have found myself watching what I call meditative movies.

These films have a certain sensibility that is intelligent but calm and the stories unfold slowly without reliance on often lazy writing like unnecessary action scenes. That’s a different kind of escape.

And it so happens that the three I’m going to talk about all have very high quality cinematography with a…

These are the places I return to when I need a boost

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The inspiration. Photo: M.Edic

You never finish learning how to write. That may be frustrating to new writers but as you progress it becomes the best thing about the writer’s life. We have infinite places to go with this.

I’ve been writing for most of my life. Yet I feel, after at least forty years, that I am just now getting to a competent level, a level where I have my own voice and style. Can I describe it? No, to be honest, but I see it emerge when the flow is good.

The writers I know and admire are, in turn, admirers of…


Novelist, Tech Marketing Writer, Growth Consultant. I have been a professional writer for over 20 years- 8 non-fiction books and 1 novel, many articles, etc.

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