“A website for anyone who ever thinks about
writing and speaking clearly …”

This is a story about learning to write and speak. Not as a child, forming letters and words. But as an adult wanting to get a message across when it matters. This website tells that story.

If you had known me when I was younger, you probably wouldn’t even think about reading on. At school, I hated writing. Every essay, comprehension or summarising exercise was a struggle. Looking back, I think my teachers must have dreaded reading what I wrote every bit as much as I hated writing it.

But, eventually, I learned. And, if I could learn from such a poor starting position, I think everyone can.

This website will appeal to anyone who wants to read about making a point clearly and persuasively … in print, on a web page or when speaking … perhaps in business, to a business or nothing at all to do with business … writing to someone important or about something you consider important … in an email, a letter, a blog or on a social network … in a sales message, a job application, or just trying to get noticed in a crowd … with humour or with complete seriousness.

“… it’s also a website that aims to be fun”

I had a lot of fun creating this site and I’ve done my level best to ensure that you have even more fun reading it. The site is punctuated with videos that reinforce the narrative. Video input includes material from Jerry Seinfeld, Greta Thunberg, Rachel from Friends, Tony Blair and a dance coach who prised his way onto these pages through the sheer force of his personality.

Whenever you see a link on this website, followed by this video-play icon (), the link should open up a video box within the existing browser window.

You can choose from several routes through this website. Most obviously, you can start at the beginning and make your way sequentially through the Storyline (), just like reading a book. Also, in the right-hand margin, there are themes () you can select from and a range of keys words () you can click on.

Read on and let me know what you think. You can express your views below or here.

A bit of backstory

My transition to becoming a writer started in a very unusual way. I was in a job that entailed drafting reports for use as expert evidence in a court of law. What I wrote needed to be clear enough to be understood by the lawyers, by the two sides in the case and by the judge. Everything would be pored over and picked apart with a fine-tooth comb. As one expert witness () has said, the message needed to be dead-on-balls accurate ().

But clarity and accuracy weren’t the most important lessons that I learned from writing those early reports. I learned to be persuasive – more persuasive than whoever was submitting a report for the other side. Back in the everyday world of normal human interaction, absolute accuracy isn’t always necessary or even valued so highly. But being persuasive is. So let’s get started …

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