M.T. Wroblewski reports:
"In a safety-conscious world, the field of law enforcement offers many career paths...To make the most of this dynamic marketplace, you may wish to send a letter of intent for a law enforcement job. Also known as a cover letter, a letter of intent isn’t always triggered by a specific job opening or advertisement. Rather, you may wish to send an enthusiastic letter of intent to an organization you really wish to work for, so when an opening does occur, your letter and resume will be at the top of the prospect file...Conduct some detective work on the organization to learn what you can about its culture, dynamics and working conditions. Your ability to tailor your letter of intent to an organization will convey the idea that you are limiting your job search, rather than blanketing hiring agencies with inquiries...Center your name at the top of the page. Place your contact information, including your cell phone number and email address, underneath in smaller type. Space four times and then write the date. Space twice and then write the inside address, being sure to include the recipient's full name and job title. Space twice and write a formal salutation...Open your letter by expressing interest in an advertised position or your desire to join the organization. Refer to your current position and the number of years of experience you have in the field of law enforcement...Summarize your professional experience, stating your positions and the names of the law enforcement agencies for whom you have worked. Refer only to the highlights; your resume will provide a detailed summary of your background...Describe your contributions and accomplishments, referring to cases you have 'cracked' or worked on, trials for which you provided testimony or initiatives you developed to reduce crime, theft or accidents. By virtue of the collaborative nature of law enforcement work, the field employs a relatively small circle of people. The more you can spark a connection with your previous projects, the more likely you may be to generate interest in scheduling an interview...Segue to your personal traits and how they complement your life’s work. Be specific and illustrate your points with a poignant example...Cite your educational credentials. Some law enforcement positions require only a high school diploma; many more require college degrees. Be certain that you possess the proper educational credentials for the position you seek before you send a letter of interest...Explain how you believe that your professional experiences, triumphs and your personal traits would lead you to make valuable contributions to the organization or be a genuine asset to its mission. Allude to any special projects or initiatives the organization may have [underway] and how you would embrace the challenges they present...Refer to your enclosed resume and references. Express your wish to arrange an interview to discuss the position and the organization. Pledge to follow up on your letter in a few days. Then thank the recipient for his time and consideration...Space twice and use a formal closing, such as 'Sincerely.' Space four times and then type your name before printing the letter. Sign your full name above the typed one...Proofread and edit your letter to ensure that it is free of spelling and grammatical errors."
Dianne O'Connell reports:
"Think about when you are suddenly pulled into a memory. Memories don’t arise out of nowhere; they need to be triggered by something in the present...Be sure there is some sort of external stimulus that pushes your character’s consciousness into the past. The fact that the flashback can be so easily triggered also lets the reader know that its content is important. It can be a great way to add depth to your novel...Just like there needs to be a reason for your character to enter a flashback, he should be pulled back to the present for a reason as well...The reader will understand why the character is jarred back into the present. This also helps reorient the reader to where you are in the story. Think of these triggers as bookends for your flashback that will make it come across as more organic...Chances are, there is only one really important point that you want to get across with your flashback, so cut it down to its key moments. If readers have to go through pages and pages of backstory, they will wonder why you didn’t just incorporate the flashback into the greater time frame of the novel...[A] reader gets to know a character much like you would get to know someone you’ve just met...Creating scenes like the protagonist’s 10th birthday can be very helpful for a writer in building a character’s biography, but you have to be ready to let these go when it comes time to assemble your story. While character is crucial in developing the story, more than anything[,] a novel is driven by plot. A flashback should always serve as a tool to advance what is happening in the present...A flashback should be used only when there is no other effective way to get an important piece of information across. If you use too many, it begins to feel like a cop-out storytelling device. Again, your readers will wonder why you didn’t just incorporate the timeline of your flashback into the greater timeline of your story, or will be confused about which timeline they should be more invested in."
Emily Yakashiro reports:
"A blog itself is an excellent platform for writing on something you are passionate about; as we blog and grow as people, writing about things that matter to you is a great way to connect on a personal level with your readers...No matter your intentions, however, sometimes charities and campaigns are not all they seem to be, and [it] is important to think critically about the causes you are involved in promoting...Blogging with integrity about something you truly care about isn’t nearly as hard as you think–if you’re passionate about something, the words will always follow...If you can only say a couple [of] stock sentences about one issue, but speak from the heart on another, go with the latter. It will catch people’s attention more, and you will feel better knowing that you can answer readers’ questions more readily, and back up your statements with your own personal experiences and research...Also known as ‘due diligence’, investigate your cause. Even though the vast majority of charities are reputable and reliable, the horrible truth is that some people aren’t honest about a charity’s work or beliefs. Just do a quick search online and see what comes up...Remember, most organizations are not exactly forthcoming about their involvement in a scandal or controversy (if such a history even exists), so you’re going to want to look at sources other than the actual organization’s website for an unbiased story...One misconception about blogging about your involvement with a social cause or charity is that you have to talk about it constantly. You don’t...You can mention your work in small snippets. For example, after talking about your day at the farmer’s market and the cute sundress you wore, try [to] weave in other information...If you collaborate with a charity that sends you a bracelet symbolizing your commitment to, say, animal rights, wear it for more than one post! For each time you wear it like you would a normal bracelet, you don’t even have to say anything about it–just do a [closeup] photo of the bracelet that’s piled on with your other bangles, and put a link below to the cause...Wearing your cause even semi-regularly is a way to keep your audience aware and focused, without seeming like you’re constantly ranting about a cause...It’s good to finish up a blog post about your involvement in a charitable organization or social cause by offering links to more information. For example, say you write a whole post about the violence against women you have witnessed on your college campus. For all you know, this might actually be the first time your readers have heard about this issue. If you want them to learn more, list a few reputable online sources of further information. You could include a couple [of] links to local women’s centers, or even online resources for women who have experienced violence...If your town or city is doing an event, like a fundraising run or [citywide] campaign, blog about it! Blogs give us a peek into life around the world, and while there’s endless coverage of international events like New York Fashion Week, coverage about a smaller event, like the Calgary Pride Parade, is just as intriguing. A relatively small event like this can even be a breath of fresh air for people who are [oversaturated] with articles about the latest couture collection."
Ricky Cadden reports:
"As a traveler, you have basically two expectations placed on you: [E]njoy the heck out of your trip, and share the story of your trip with others. The first one is easy – after all, that’s why you travel, right? The second one can be a bit challenging, but is so important, especially in today’s hyper-connected social culture. Odds are, when you were shopping for your flight, hotel, or things to do, you read reviews along the way. As such, when you get back from your trip, it’s a good idea to spend a bit of time posting a review of your own, to pay it forward and help future travelers know what to expect, questions to ask, or things to avoid...Be quick about it – [A] best practice is to take a small notebook to keep notes during your trip. This will help you remember small details, and can make your review more useful to future travelers...[N]obody expects you to post a review of your hotel on every travel website out there. We recommend Gogobot as a great place to both contribute and discover. Most hotels, resorts, and travel agents will send you a reminder to do this after your trip – pick one and consider yourself done...Honesty is the best policy – [Y]our review doesn’t have to focus on just the positives, or just the negatives. In fact, it can be helpful to include both, as well as the reasoning behind it. Instead of simply stating that the food was terrible, try to explain why...Be specific – [I]ncluding details such as the type of room you stayed in, the time of year, or the dish that you ordered makes your review much more helpful to future travelers...Include photos – [I]t’s one thing to drool over the picturesque brochure-quality photos of a resort. It’s another thing entirely to be able to look at traveler-posted photos of the actual rooms. This is also much easier if you’ve already organized your travel photos. Remember, reviews aren’t just a place to air your grievances – they’re also a great way for you to help future travelers enjoy their trip as much as you just enjoyed yours!"
Alan Harris reports:
"Whether you’re writing an irresistible email subject line, drafting up a promo, creating an email invitation, or writing a social post, here are five ways to grab the attention of your audience, and ignite them into action...Nothing conveys a sense of urgency quite like a deadline. Reinforce the deadline in your email subject line or headline, [in] the body copy and in the call-to-action...Use time-sensitive phrasing and wording...especially in tandem with a deadline...If you don’t want to use a hard deadline or expiration date, you can still use time-sensitive language in a general way, e.g. 'limited-time offer.' You can also employ a countdown clock in your emails and across social media channels to reinforce the sense of urgency. Sending a last reminder in the final hours of an offer can also be effective...An alternative way to communicate urgency to your readers without relying on deadlines is to emphasize or create a sense of scarcity...Whether you’re selling tickets to a fundraiser, or new merchandise, reminding your audience that you only have a finite and rapidly dwindling supply of something can help push those fence-sitters over the edge. Also be honest about the limited supply of your product or service as well. If people rush to buy a 'flying off the shelves' ticket only to see there are plenty more a week later, you’ll have angry customers on your hands...Once you entice readers, don’t overwhelm them with a mountain of text, because the average reader doesn’t have the attention for it. Instead, keep the body of your message brief so readers focus on your headline, key points and call-to-action...It doesn’t matter how well[-]written your email, blog or social post is if your readers don’t know what you want them to do. Make it obvious with a direct and easy[-]to[-]understand CTA, or call-to-action. Whether you want them to make a phone call or click-through to your website, make your CTA a highly visible link or button with action-oriented wording."
Stephanie Chandler reports:
"If you’re working on your first book, you will inevitably have to sit down and write the sales copy that appears on the back of your book (also known as ‘jacket’ copy). For authors who haven’t had to do this before, it can feel like a bit of a challenge. You have a very limited amount of space on the back of your book so every word counts. The ultimate goal is to entice your target audience—potential readers—and convince them to purchase your book…Start by reading the jacket copy on other books, especially from books in the same genre as yours. Find out how other authors position their books and what benefits they mention…You can also do much of this research on Amazon since most book listings feature the back cover copy, or an expanded version of the back cover copy…Write a compelling, and brief, opening paragraph. Draw readers in by identifying who they are and helping them relate to the solutions offered by your book…For most nonfiction books, you should highlight benefits that the reader will enjoy, ideally in a bulleted list following the introductory paragraph. To uncover the benefits in your book, figure out what problems your book solves for readers…After your list of benefits, wrap up the copy with a strong call to action. That means that you are going to ask the reader for the sale (the gentle art of persuasion)…The back of your book cover should also include high-profile endorsements from one or more authors in your field. While it’s great if your client or your sister’s best friend enjoyed your book, the only endorsements that really deserve to be put on a cover should come from recognizable authors in the same genre. In some cases, executives from large companies or nonprofits can provide endorsements if it fits in with your target audience, but author endorsements are preferred. If you don’t have any big name endorsements, then it is better to leave them off than to put endorsements from people nobody has heard of (you can list those in the first pages of the book instead)…Lastly, the bottom of your back cover should include a brief author bio, and this should cover the top highlights from your career. This is not the place to mention pets or hobbies (unless you’re being humorous and that’s part of your sales strategy). Instead, focus on your biggest accomplishments including the number of years of work history you have in the field related to your book, major media outlets where you have been featured, awards you’ve won, and anything else that demonstrates your authority in your field. Don’t forget to include your website link and a professional head shot of you. If this is your first time writing sales copy, find a copywriter or an experienced editor and ask them to review it and offer you suggestions for improvement. The back cover can have a big effect on a potential reader’s decision to buy your book or put it back on the shelf. Make sure your cover reflects the best your book has to offer.”
Charlie R. Claywell reports:
"At its core, public relations is about publicly presenting an organization in a positive light. Accomplishing this entails a wide range of activities, from writing press releases to speeches...Employment options are flexible; public relations writers can work for everything from private corporations to government agencies...Working as [a] public relations writer, often referred to as a technician, is the usual way a person lands their first position in public relations. As a technician, the individual often writes articles for employee handbooks or publications and press releases. While in this role, the technician should improve and develop data gathering skills. Depending on the size of the firm, the public relations writer may also be required to take photographs and lay out simple brochures for their employer or client...Skills learned as a public relations writer normally carry over throughout the rest of an individual's career...Besides data gathering and quality writing skills, a public relations writer must be adept at building connections with individuals important to their company. This usually means cultivating relationships with journalists, bloggers, or industry opinion-makers. With the advent of social media, public relations writers are expected to maintain a positive voice for their client, firm, or company on the various social media platforms. If their client faces negative publicity, public relations writers must find [ways] to deflect the negativity and 'change the narrative.' Since public relations writers specialize in an industry, such as finance, it's in the writer's best interest to be highly knowledgeable about the industry. The more an individual knows about their field, the better prepared they will be to take advantage of a positive news story or deflect negative ones. Because of this specialization, individuals should carefully consider what degree they earn...Typically, public relations writers hold a bachelor's degree in public relations, communications, English, business, or journalism. For those writers moving up into a supervisory role, a master's degree may be required...Because public relations specialists are knowledgeable about their company's industry, they can position their company as a leader in its respective field. Most public relation[s] specialists work in one of five industries...Candidates working in this field should be outgoing, comfortable with technology, and able to think creatively. If you have those attributes, there are several organizations that exist to help you get your career going...Regardless of how you get going, public relations is an excellent career with an even better career outlook. In recent years, social media and the increasingly rapid flow of online information has created favorable conditions for public relations specialists. With good pay and lots of job opportunities, this is one career that is likely to be around for a while."
The Greenhouse blog reports:
"Before you begin writing your customer service job description, you need to understand and identify exactly what will make a great customer service representative at your company. Start by interviewing hiring managers to know exactly what you’re looking for. This will help you filter out unqualified candidates, target the right individuals during sourcing efforts, and structure interview questions that assess the right things...Outline these key attributes and competencies needed for your customer service role, and enter them into your candidate scorecard template...Don't forget your company's culture values! Every company has different core values, so be sure to explicitly define these before publishing your job description. This will help substantially when you begin writing your customer service rep job description, ensuring that every candidate carries these values and fits the mold [your] team is looking for...When writing a customer service representative job description, you’ll want to make sure you include their job tasks and responsibilities. Being as descriptive as possible will help potential candidates get a feel for what their day-to-day will look like, and if they’re a good fit for your company...Candidates want to see a clear title and job description that communicate what they will be doing in a role. However, this doesn’t mean 'Customer Service Representative' is your only option. A creative job title just might get stellar prospects excited about applying to your organization, because it can show how much you value the position...When you’ve collected all of the information above, it’s time to take your first crack at writing a good customer service job description. It’s important to ensure your job descriptions mirror the tone, goals, and values of your company...The customer service role is crucial to the success of your business and directly impacts the way people feel about your brand, your company, and the products or services you provide. Individuals who fill this position are critical to your company’s mission because they serve as a direct link between you and the customer. They are the people who will be making a lasting impression on clients and customers they interact with. By spending time carefully crafting your customer service rep job description, you set yourself up for hiring success! Once you begin opening the doors and interviewing candidates, you use your candidate scorecard to help you get structured written feedback from all the members of your team conducting interviews."
Irene A. Blake reports:
"The biography you write for a company or personal work-related website acts as a form of advertising that can help colleagues, a current or potential employer or clients to quickly determine if you’re the right person for a job. As a result, it must describe you, your background, work ethic and personality in a clear and succinct fashion. Although you may have many professional or personal details to include in a work website bio, writing it shouldn’t take more than an hour. You simply need to prepare the details beforehand and then insert them into a basic work-bio format...Review bios on your company’s website to get an idea of what the company expects. If you’re writing a bio for a personal, but work-related, website, review bios on websites you frequently visit that relate to your career field or position...Make a short list of your greatest professional achievements and awards...Write down some of your qualifications, skills and education including degrees and certifications. If you received professional or career-related academic honors, note those as well...Create a short list of additional professional and personal information that you feel relates to your career and personality, such as professional memberships, volunteer work, current projects and hobbies...Decide on a length for your biography. A short biography is typically four sentences, approximately 150 to 200 words or less, in length. A long biography depends on the website requirements and is usually two to three short paragraphs in length...Write the first sentence outlining who you are, the name of the company or organization you currently work for, or your business name, and your area or areas of expertise...Make the next sentence about your past within the same career field if applicable...Use the lists you prepared to outline, in a new paragraph, your achievements, education, certifications, professional memberships, current work-related projects and volunteer work. If you’re writing a long bio, add hobbies or a fun fact at the end...Ask several people -- colleagues, supervisors, family members and friends -- to review your bio and provide feedback. After you receive the feedback, edit your biography as needed...Imagine you’re describing someone else to a colleague or client in a face-to-face conversation when writing your biography. Write your biography using third person 'he' or 'she' pronouns. If you want contact information -- phone number, email address or both -- to appear in your biography, place the information at the end...Always use your full name in the first sentence unless informal speech is acceptable for your work situation. Always use the same version of your name after the first sentence for consistency. For example, if you use your last name, continue using it throughout the bio instead of switching between your last name, first name or full name."
Adam Jefferys reports:
"A monologue poem -- also known as a dramatic monologue or a persona poem -- features a single speaker who is a fictional character and distinct from the poet or writer of the poem...Explore what sort of person your speaker is before you start writing: what your speaker does for a living, where your speaker is from, what adjectives you would use to describe the speaker, what he or she looks like. Most importantly, ask yourself why this character needs to say what he or she has to say within the poem. Characters who feel a need to defend or explain themselves are often particularly good choices -- this lends a natural tension to the poem...The speaker of a monologue poem exists primarily as a voice. The speaker’s voice should characterize him or her. Avoid relying on stereotypes or accents. Instead, ask how elements of your speaker’s personality relate to the way he or she speaks. If your speaker is full of himself, perhaps he speaks in long sentences filled with misused words. If your speaker is nervous, perhaps she speaks in only half-finished sentences...Just as the speaker in a monologue poem is not the poet, the implied audience in a monologue poem is not always meant to be the poem’s actual readers. The implied audience, like the speaker, may be fictitious...Consider who your implied audience is and how this audience affects your speaker’s monologue...Dramatic irony refers to a situation in which a character in a poem is ignorant of something that the poem’s audience knows. Many monologue poems use dramatic irony to great effect...Consider how you can use dramatic irony to allow your readers to understand things that the speaker is ignorant of."
Writing and editing can be pretty rigorous processes if you want to do them well, but that's what this page is here for. Check out the latest tips here.