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Nick Usborne has a great deal. You get his permission-based newsletter and a free ebook too.  Writing for the Web: FREE Guide with your Newsletter Sign Up.

A great quote from Oscar Wilde

Link: acleareye.com: Oscar Wilde on liars.

"The liar at any rate recognizes that recreation, not instruction, is the aim of conversation, and is a far more civilised being than the blockhead who loudly expresses his disbelief in a story which is told simply for the amusement of the company."

Three posts you might have overlooked

Last chance before they fall off into the depths of May:

1. you can sell my knock knock ebook on your website if you want to. I’m surprised that only 1% of my sales so far have come this way: Seth’s Blog: Affiliate sales of Knock Knock.

2. I thought this post would really generate a lot of discussion:  Seth’s Blog: The Placebo Affect*.

3. And last, if you’re interested in the $1,000 bounty or the internship, I need to hear from you by Tuesday:  Seth’s Summer Intern Project.

A misplaced vowel

Dsc00648When I first encountered this restaurant in New York, I was excited. Look at how authentic the bronze plate fitted into the granite appears (sorry if it’s sideways..). It had just the right tone. It was easy to imagine the meditation bells and the wholesome asian food.

Then I looked up and saw the banner and the name. It’s all wrong. Franchia is not the right name for this place. Something was wrong. Are they trying too hard? Don’t they get it? Why does it sound like a french-italian hybrid?

First impressions are everywhere, and they matter.


Cookies you can feel good about

CookiesEverything about the packaging is perfect. The matte finish. The old fashioned roll top. The colors and more.

The only problem is that these cookies are no healthier than most of the others on the shelf. The reason to buy them is that they make it easy to lie to yourself when you feed em to your kids.

Is it only my supermarket that is now filled with stuff like this?

All Marketers...

The promised book list

At the end of LIARS, I give you a list of further reading.

Thanks to Todd, I don’t have to type it in!

Link: 800-CEO-READ Blog: More Reading from All Marketers Are Liars

More on lying politicians

I’m riffing with Jennifer today. It’s the end of the tour.  What’s Your Brand Mantra?.

All Marketers...

Five page free excerpt

You can find a five page excerpt right here.

Is J. D. Salinger a Liar? Are You?

Did Holden Caulfield really have the adventures and angst the author wrote about? Of course not. There wasn’t a Holden Caulfield. Catcher in the Rye is a work of fiction.

So what’s the difference between fiction and a lie? Is storytelling lying?

I think the distinction we make for ourselves is that novelists don’t pretend that they are telling us the truth. They don’t set out to deceive because they write novels, which are clearly labeled as untrue. No evil intent, no lie.

Judging from my email and some postings on blogs here and there, it seems that some people have a trouble with the word "liar". Liar is a word that makes us angry.

When I wrote All Marketers Are Liars (Liar’s Blog) I was trying to make a point about true lies.

Some (mostly those that haven’t bothered to read it) think I’m telling people to lie and cheat and deceive and abandon what few ethics we’ve got left. Nope! I’m doing the opposite.

I start by telling you that you ARE telling a story whether you want to or not. You are a novelist, a film director, a fabulist. It’s impossible to deliver the entire truth to anyone, ever, so by making choices, you’re telling a story. If your blog is well-designed, that’s part of your story. If your blog is ugly, that’s a story too. Neither story has to do with the words. But you’re still telling a story. We as marketers ought to recognize that and start acting that way–our competition sure is.

Then I say that telling a story that is inauthentic, inconsistent, hollow or filled with unstated side effects isn’t just wrong, it’s stupid. The best lies are true! True in the sense that you don’t disappoint the listener when she discovers more facts about what you do.

Any marketer who believes that they are in the business of telling the truth about what they do is delusional. You can’t. Not enough time, not enough attention, not enough money.

J.D. Salinger understood this when he wrote his novels. He didn’t try to tell the truth. He tried to tell a story that resonated.

Be a true liar. Someone who knows he’s in the storytelling business, someone who tells people about his ideas in terms they want to hear it. But be someone who’s stories hold up under inspection.

ChangeThis, reborn

I’m pleased to announce that as of today, ChangeThis has a new steward.

Todd and Jack and the rest of the team at 800 CEO READ have agreed to take it over. No money changed hands, no "promotional considerations." They’re doing it because they like it and because they believe that promoting cutting edge ideas can only help their business. The announcement is here. 800-CEO-READ Blog: 800-CEO-READ and ChangeThis.

I want to thank the great team of interns that built Changethis, especially Amit Gupta who has stuck with it over the last bunch of months. And I’m grateful to Jack and Todd. They work hard to do exactly what they say they’re going to do.

And thanks to all of you that have read our stuff (for free, I might add!) and helped it spread.