🐈 Break out of your writing niche

Posted: January 26, 2023
Word count: 1,293 (5 min)

👋 Hi! I’m Tom, and this is the Best Writing Newsletter (Issue #24). I share great reads, tools, jobs, tips, and friendly encouragement to do your best writing. Sent every week.

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Tomas Laurinavicius

Co-founder & Chief Editor, Best Writing

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Curiosity is informal research.

Study hard what interests you the most in the most undisciplined, irreverent, and original manner possible.” – Richard Feynman

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The best writers have wandering minds.

Which often makes many of us question our career choices.

Copy, SEO, article, or journalistic — you can do a lot of writing to earn a living.

Yet, most advice for beginners urges you to “pick a writing niche.” Then milk it till the end of your days. (Or so they say).

But what if you’re tired of staying in one lane?

Take a quick over-the-shoulder look: No one prohibits you from trying other things.

People change writing niches all the time.

Natasha Khullar Relph went from being a journalist to working as a content marketer, then became a published author.

Exploring new writing avenues can be fun & profitable.

It’s a great way to develop new skills, learn about emerging content roles, and figure out what type of writing you enjoy doing.

Maybe a fantastic screenwriter or content designer is hiding within you.

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Writing Tip of the Week

📙The art of subtle persuasion. This week’s tip comes from Erica Schneider.

Content writers are planting ideas into the readers’ minds.

So that when they are ready to buy, they’ll be thinking about the solution you’ve promoted.

It’s called subtle persuasion. It’s the opposite of in-your-face CTAs like “Buy before it’s gone” or “Get this now with a crazy discount.”

Instead, you do this:

For that to happen, you must create content tailored to each customer group and their awareness stage.

Doing so is the best way to gently persuade people in your writing.

Best Writing Examples

Discover sharp copy, inspiring quotes, and powerful messaging from the best apps, websites, magazines, and books.

Reformation is a fine specimen of a sassy brand personality, perfectly tailored to its target audience — Millennial women.

This About Page from Immi helps immediately picture the people behind the business and develop an emotional bond with the now 30-something founders & chefs.

Scottish craft beer brewer Brew Dog is well-known for its punk personality and provocative publicity campaigns. For their 2019 Game of Thrones ad placement, they’ve decided to try something radically different: a barebone, no budget, in-your-face kind of message like the above. You can view the video version here.

Best Reads

Favorite stories from all around the web.

🗓️ Three-day workweek. Is it even possible?! Writer Kat Boogard is prooves that with some deliberation, planning, and time management, you can work only three days per week and take home a sizable income.

📏 Short vs. long SaaS copy. Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is both an art and a science. If you’ve wondered how page copy length affects conversions for SaaS brands, this post from Copyhackers spills the beans.

🧲 How to win and retain high-paying clients. This excellent post by B2B SaaS writer Rochi Zalani breaks down the 19 steps she uses to have her schedule choke-full of well-paid, recurring gigs.

🤖 AI: friend or foe? Unless you’ve just emerged from a month-long Vipassana retreat, you’ve heard about ChatGPT (aka the free, scary-good AI writing tool). But if you’d been reluctant to try out that devil, this post may prompt you to reconsider.

Cool Tools

Handy apps and helpful software for growth-driven writers.

Visualize Habit. Building a habit takes anywhere between 18 days to 254 days. Visualize Habit helps you stay on track by showing how daily actions (like 15 minutes of reading) contribute to significant results (18 books read per year!).

Popsy. Want to finally launch your personal website? Popsy is a new no-code website builder with a Notion-like interface, free icons, and illustrations. Maintaining a live site costs $8/mo.

Literal. Not a fan of Goodreads? Try Literal. It’s a free app for organizing book lists, notes, and highlights. You can also chat with other users in private or public communities.

Posture Pal.

Stop hunching over your desk and getting that nasty back pain. The Posture Pal app connects to your AirPods to nag you whenever your neck and shoulder posture is off. It also includes some nice, quick stretching exercises (+ adorable mascots!).

Food for Thought

Read, read, read. Read everything -- trash, classics, good and bad, and see how they do it. Just like a carpenter who works as an apprentice and studies the master. Read! You'll absorb it. Then write. If it's good, you'll find out. If it's not, throw it out of the window.” – William Faulkner

One simple way to keep your priorities straight is by judging how each of your options will influence your personal energy. It’s not a foolproof gauge, but if you know a particular path will make you feel more stressed, unhealthy, and drained, it’s probably the wrong choice.” – Scott Adams

Do whatever brings you to life, then. Follow your own fascinations, obsessions, and compulsions. Trust them. Create whatever causes a revolution in your heart.” – Elizabeth Gilbert

Lions in the wild seem about ten times more alive. They're like different animals. I suspect that working for oneself feels better to humans in much the same way that living in the wild must feel better to a wide-ranging predator like a lion. Life in a zoo is easier, but it isn't the life they were designed for.” – Paul Graham

Did You Know?

In 2004, Jeff Bezos banned PowerPoint & bullet points among senior Amazon leadership, “and it’s probably the smartest thing we ever did.” – end of a direct quote.

Instead, Bezos forced the execs to submit longer, narrative-driven memos before each meeting. Then read them together in a “study hall” style.

He was also very meticulous about the quality and style of those six-page memos:

“Here’s what we’ve figured out. Often, when a memo isn’t great, it’s not the writer’s inability to recognize the high standard, but instead a wrong expectation on scope: they mistakenly believe a high-standards, six-page memo can be written in one or two days or even a few hours when really it might take a week or more! They’re trying to perfect a handstand in just two weeks, and we’re not coaching them right. The great memos are written and rewritten, shared with colleagues who are asked to improve the work, set aside for a couple of days, and then edited again with a fresh mind. They simply can’t be done in a day or two. The key point here is that you can improve results through the simple act of teaching scope – that a great memo probably should take a week or more.”

I can’t agree more. Coherent, impactful, and persuasive writing takes time and requires frequent feedback.

Best Writing Jobs

Find your next writing job, freelance gig, or side hustle.

  1. Freelance Writer/Editor at Monk's Hill Ventures (Remote)
  2. Full-Time Syndication Editor at Launch Potato (Remote)
  3. Full-Time Technical Content Writer at Last9 (Remote, US)
  4. Full-Time Content Manager at Signos (Remote)
  5. Freelance Copywriter at Cella (Remote, US)

💼 Check all open roles or become a member to get daily job alerts.

Hiring writers? Use the code “FIRSTJOB” at checkout to get $100 off your first job post.

Did You Like the Newsletter?

🤝 Want to get featured or collaborate? Let’s talk.

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Until next week,

Tomas Laurinavicius

Co-founder, Best Writing

P.S. Can’t find the right word.


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