Emergency Coffee

beyond "show, don't tell"

Welcome to the inaugural edition of Emergency Coffee, a newsletter featuring writing-related articles and stories for your writerly consideration.

The point of this newsletter is to dig deeper than the same old writing advice you likely hear parroted over and over—think “show, don't tell” or when someone says never to use passive voice. Good writing is much more nuanced than that. And good writing is not just about technique; it's also about the philosophy behind why you use the words you use. And let's not forget about process.

Blogs & Articles

Show and Tell — Patrick Barry argues that “show, don't tell” is horrible advice. Instead we should seek to “show and tell”, to move between the general and the specific effectively.

Death by “As You Know” — William Gallagher makes the case that relying on “as you know” in dialogue is lazy exposition. This is true, as you know.

There is No One Way— Scott Nesbitt's point is the backbone of Emergency Coffee: Consider the contents of these newsletters and feel free to copy, adapt, or discard however you see fit.

Lunch Break — C.J. Eller makes the case that distancing yourself from your task may give you the space you need to find a solution. Remember this the next time you can't get your writing quite right.

Don't Be Better...Be “The Only” — James Altucher argues that, in an age in which everyone has endless options, it's not enough to be great. It's far better to stand out. What can you infuse into your writing style to make you “the only”?

Videos

The Rule of Three — “The good, the bad, and the ugly.” “For free. For everyone. Forever.” Why do these phrases work? Patrick Barry teaches you how to utilize the rule of three to establish rhythm in your own writing.

Trying to be Original Destroys Your Productivity — Captain Sinbad reminds us that “originality” comes from the juxtaposition of unoriginal ideas. Acknowledge your influences and get busy thinking about what you can steal from them and then infuse your own style to make it seem original.

Podcasts

Crypto, NFTs, and Blockchain ft. Raoul Pa‪l‬ — What does the blockchain have to do with writing? Raoul Pal chats with Scott Galloway about how the blockchain could revolutionize the relationship between creators and their fans by cutting out middlemen. Maybe one day soon I'll be announcing the launch of my exclusive crypto, Jakey Coin.

Until next time

I hope you've enjoyed my first stab at a writing newsletter. I've already got some interesting findings stored up for future months, so let's keep the gravy train rollin'.

If you have any feedback, feel free to drop me a line at newsletter@jakelacaze.com.

See ya next month.

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