Friday, August 23, 2013

Say What You Mean

It is so easy to get caught up in your own frilly language that you lose sight of what it is you are actually trying to say. I'm in marketing. I do this all the time. I get PAID to delude people into thinking things are more than they are by throwing superfluous adjectives around them. (see what I did there?) Sadly this bad habit has leeched its way into my creative writing. As I've been going through my latest MS, I've been able to cut five thousand words by taking out the unnecessary. (I wished I had saved an excerpt to show you, but I am on this new kick of deleting without care.) However, I recently came across a marketing report that, in my opinion, is one of the worst offenders of marketing jargon I have ever seen. Let's see what it is they're really trying to tell us....

Marketing Jargon: ...to seamlessly provide differentiated but consistent experiences across all touch points.

Oh yes, they sound very knowledgeable and educated. Look at all those big words! But what the hell does it mean?

English: Make your website and in-store experience similar but unique.
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Marketing Jargon: When consumers feel confident that they will be receiving the brand experience they expect, no matter which channel they use to access the brand, then they will feel more loyal to the brand and will be more likely to buy today and in the future.

Whatever you do, don't do this. Your readers shouldn't have to follow you through a maze to figure out what you're trying to tell them. They're likely to get lost.

English: When consumers have a consistent brand experience, they will be more likely to buy.
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Marketing Jargon: While showrooming is not a new challenge for retailers, the proliferation of smartphones in recent years has drawn some worrisome holiday forecasts for brick-and-mortar stores.

Look what happens when you make the subject more active. You can actually read it and understand it!

English: Brick-and-mortar stores are worried about smartphones taking sales away.
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Of course, creative writing is supposed to creative. We love adjectives and those devilish adverbs! Just use them sparingly, and make sure when you're editing that you mean what you say and say what you mean.


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Facebook Things that Annoy Me

Statuses that start with "I am so blessed...."
I just hate the idea that the Universe hands out good jobs and cute babies and helpful friends like it's a lottery or something. Take some credit for yourself! It was your good genes and good parenting skills that gave you that sweet baby. You worked hard and earned that job. You have good friends because you are a good friend. All you are blessed with is the sense to value what you have.

Not-So-Vaguebooking
"I trusted you, and you broke my heart. Karma's coming for you...blah blah blah." Everyone knows who you are talking about and we are  friends with your cheating boyfriend too. Facebook is not the place to announce your break-up and it most certainly isn't the place to air your dirty laundry. My friends are in their thirties. About fifteen to twenty years past this bullshit. So why am I seeing it?

Oh Baby
It's like a veritable baby fiesta on my Facebook status, and yes, I do like seeing pictures of your children, and I like to know what you and they are doing, but I don't need to know about every shit your child takes, and I absolutely do not want to see the photo of them taking it.

Some moments are meant to be private, like your labor. I do not care if you took an epidural or not, and when you blast out what a champion you are for surviving 1800 hours of labor with nothing except a splintery piece of wood gritted in your teeth, it sounds like you are trying to put us sane mothers to shame for not being masochists. Trust me, we think you're crazy. We just don't have the need to point it out on Facebook.

Game Requests
Is there anything else that reeks so strongly of desperation? Every time I get a game request, I shake my head in shame. It's like an advertisement you're sending out about how sad your life is, and now, you're trying to drag me down with you. No, I'm sorry. I do things. I go outside. I have friends. I do not need to crush candy or kill angry birds to be fulfilled. What's worse is you keep sending them over and over again, in the hopes I'll give in and you'll get those last few precious points you need to move onto the next level. Oh dear friend, I won't give in. I'll only weep for you.