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Creators' Corner #10 - Why I Write, transparency and storytelling

John Nicholas
John Nicholas
4 min read
Creators' Corner #10 - Why I Write, transparency and storytelling
Picture of the week. Lago di Garda, Italy. Snapped by one of my friends on our run up to the La Rocca lookout point this weekend.

Ciao everyone 👋. I'm sending this in after a lovely week of la dolce vita in Northern Italy.

Creators' Corner is up to double digits. What started as an experiment to force myself to publish consistently and consume information more intentionally, is 10 issues old. Thanks so much for joining this journey.

Seven new people signed up this week bringing the total up to 108 subscribers. If you enjoy the newsletter, please forward it on. If you have 10 seconds to share a comment or idea, please hit reply.


Line-up this week:

  1. New essay: Why I Write.
  2. Creator in the spotlight: Charlie Bleecker.
  3. My Favourites: article and quote of the week.

1. Why I Write

I jumped on a call with a course mate from Write of Passage a month ago and he asked me the million-dollar question – why do I write?

Here is what I told him.

It comes down to three things:

  1. Feeling grounded. It's an outlet for my creativity and an antidote to restlessness.
  2. Differentiating myself. Your website is better than a CV and it increases serendipity.
  3. Figuring out my purpose. This is the first time I have given this much thought to what I want to create with my life.

Click the link below to read the full essay -->

Why I Write
I jumped on a call with a course mate from Write of Passage a month ago and he asked me the million-dollar question – why do I write? Here is what I told him. It comes down to three things: Feeling groundedDifferentiating myselfFiguring out my purpose1. Feeling groundedBefore I started writing

2. Creator in the spotlight

Charlie Bleecker is our creator in the spotlight this week.

I love Charlie's writing. It is a mix of hilarious stories, family drama, life lessons and full-on transparency.

Apart from being a brilliant writer, Charlie is a role model when it comes to consistency, publishing over 100 consecutive newsletters over the last two years. In Transparent Tuesdays, she writes about personal growth, parenting and relationships. As she says:

"My hope is to create a safe space for readers to feel like we’re in this thing together. Because everything we do, no matter how embarrassing or shameful, helps us grow into the people we’re meant to become.

Recently she repurposed an old essay about her dad into a Twitter thread and doubled her followers in a few days. This is one of my favourite essays of hers and it was great seeing the story getting more recognition online.

It goes to show: online writing is 50% writing and 50% distribution (email lists, sharing on social media, repurposing content, engaging with your audience). The writing itself is hard, but that is half the job. You need to get some eyeballs on your work.

Follow Charlie for more transparent writing.


3. My Favourites

Article of the week

I admire great storytellers. People with the ability to captivate a room and have people hanging on their lips.

One of my 12 Favourite Problems this year is to become a better storyteller. This post from Julian Shapiro is a great guide.

How to tell a great story
A blog post that deconstructs how to be a great spoken storyteller. How do you make an audience lean in?

Highlights:

  • Build up suspense. "Talented storytellers know something bad storytellers don't: storytelling is the art of strategically withholding information."
  • The power of writing. "Nearly 100% of the stories and analogies Neil deGrasse Tyson shares in interviews are first written down."

Quote of the week

"When my daughter was about seven years old, she asked me one day what I did at work. I told her I worked at the college - that my job was to teach people how to draw. She stared at me, incredulous, and said, 'You mean they forget?'" - Howard Ikemoto

Thanks to Ken Rice for sharing this during our group drawing session last Saturday.

Have a creative week and happy Easter to those celebrating.

-- John


Notes:

About this newsletter: You are receiving this email because you subscribed to johnnicholas.org.

If you are a new or recent subscriber, I'd love to know which country you are signing in from and where you heard about me. It's always great to meet new subs!

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John Nicholas Twitter

Actuary and creator.

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