Category Archives: Professional Development

A 30-day writing challenge, a brand new class, and a book giveaway.

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Want to be a better writer?

What does it take to become a better writer? I've been thinking a lot about resolutions and goals lately, and every time I talk to someone, I hear the same dream:

I want to write more.

So these past few weeks, I've been making a few new things to help with this. At my new job at One Month, at least half of my teammates said that they also wanted to make writing a priority for 2015. After some late-night giggles and brainstorming, I whipped together a quick challenge for us: 30 days of writing prompts, so you can write a new essay each day.

Fun announcement #1: Take the 30-day writing challenge (free)! 

Want to write with us? Sign up here to get email prompts delivered daily for a month and join us on the writing journey.

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Also, I’m teaching a brand-new class on content marketing — including tips on copywriting, building relationships, understanding your customer, and capturing email leads. Which leads me to...

Fun announcement #2: I'll be teaching a new class on Content Marking in February!

In February, I'll be teaching a brand-new One Month class on Content Marketing.

Content Marketing covers the ins and outs of creating brilliant content and connecting with your desired audience — through a deep understanding of your user, strategic publishing, and creative copywriting. We'll cover topics like thought leadership, copywriting basics, creating landing pages, writing great headlines, and capturing leads.

If you want to be on the early-bird access list for the course, sign up here.

The class will be four weeks long, with screen-share videos and personal videos 3-4 times each week. We'll do three projects together, and you'll get to meet your classmates and talk through ideas in a private forum. You can email me and chat about questions you have along the way. This is a chance to dig deeper into the field of content marketing and improve your writing and marketing skills.

But before I finalize the development of the class, I'd love to know from YOU: Why are you interested in taking this class?

I’m in the early stages of planning the course, so I’d love your feedback and insights. In exchange for sharing your thoughts and feedback with me on the upcoming course, I'll send four survey participants a digital copy of my favorite book this month, Cal Newport's So Good They Can't Ignore You.

Fun announcement #3: A book-giveaway! Take the survey, win a book.

Let me know what you'd love to learn about content marketing — and what topics you think I should focus on during the class. It's a short survey, and I'll be giving away four copies of my favorite book this month randomly to people who fill out the survey before January 30th.

Take the survey, here.

Thank you!

The upside of being busy

Being busy – being full, having a lot to do, filling your calendar to the brim — can be overwhelming, tiring, exhausting. Sometimes we’re busy for busy’s sake. And answering “busy” to how have you been is, well, annoying. But sometimes there’s an upside to being busy. When you’ve got a handful of projects toContinue Reading

Have you changed your narrative lately?

As I wander through cities, one of the things I look for is evidence of fresh construction. Cities are living, breathing, pulsating organisms, and a great indicator of change is the number of cranes you can see dotting the skyline. In San Francisco, new construction emerges when the lack of residential units becomes absurd; inContinue Reading

How to Create an Online Home You Love: a one-night live event in NYC with Holstee, my hubby & me.

How’s your internet home treating you? Are you loving it, hating it, indifferent towards it, or … not making it? If you’ve ever wanted to start a blog, write an e-book, or create your own online home powerhouse to showcase your creative ideas, then it’s time to make it happen. I’m thrilled to announce aContinue Reading

Ship. Iterate. Improve. Repeat.

How do you make something great? Start small. Build something that you can do today, this week. Ship a little piece of it. Stop holding on to it. Maybe keep the idea big, but just start with something so small you can’t not do it. Make the smallest version possible. Give it away. Share it. SellContinue Reading

You don’t have to do it alone. [an epic resource + event + spiritual program guide.] All my favorite programs for you, right now.

Many of us want similar things in life. Freedom. Love. Money. Safety. Security. Happiness. Depending on where you are in Maslow’s theoretical hierarchy of needs, your next immediate problem might either be finding a meal to satiate your hunger—or it might be reaching out to new meetup groups to make more friends. It might be heading out onContinue Reading

What to do about negative feedback.

Are you hungry enough? So I’m at home on a Saturday night, and I’m watching America’s Next Top Model, one of my guilty pleasures and trashy TV shows that I sometimes tune into (it’s that, Project Runway, and Suits that make me curl up with a bowl of popcorn after a long day). While you can holdContinue Reading

Are you in love with the product? Or the process?

“My job is to do, not to judge.” — Dani Shapiro Sometimes, as writers or as makers, we become obsessed with the outcome. The work itself as object, as product — not as process. We judge, criticize, and refuse to do the work when we see the outcome as one great failure. Push publish anyways, IContinue Reading

Pandering — and 9 other things great writers refuse to do.

Writing is easy. All you have to do is cross out the wrong words. — Mark Twain I don’t often publish guest posts here on It Starts With, but occasionally I meet a fellow writer with a story and a message that matches our audience. Today, I’m delighted to share the work of Isaiah Hankel. Isaiah isContinue Reading

The Writer’s Workshop is now open for our summer session! Join us for the next class—and kickstart your writing into high gear.

It’s baaaaack! The Writer’s Workshop will open up again this summer for a brand-new six-week session beginning June 30th. The Writer’s Workshop is a live course focused on improving your storytelling, writing, and narrative abilities through eight masterful lectures and exercises — together with a community of co-writers to share the journey. We interview experts across the industry inContinue Reading