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How to Be Unforgettable

How to Be Unforgettable

Note from Glen: Can I tell you a secret? This is my all-time favorite BBT post. It was first published long before I became editor but here it is again because the message is still so important.

Can I tell you my worst nightmare?

I’m lying in bed in a nursing home, sick and dying, gasping for breath, knowing that any minute now I’ll be passing into the great beyond. And I’m scared, really, really scared, because I’m all alone, and I don’t know what’s going to happen, and oh God, it hurts so much…

But then it stops. My body goes limp, my last breath rattles from my lungs, my bowels release, and the heart monitor beside the bed flat lines, loudly proclaiming the end of the great and mighty Jon Morrow.

A few moments later, a nurse walks into the room, checks my pulse, and looks at her watch. She writes down my time of death on a form, pulls the sheet over my head, and goes back to her office, where she calls the morgue. A day or two later, I’m cremated with five other bodies, all of us too unimportant to even get our own urn.

And the worst part?

The next day, the sun comes up. The birds are singing. People eat breakfast, go to work, attend meetings… and nobody even notices I’m gone. The great wheel keeps on turning, and for better or worse, I’m forgotten. Goodbye cruel world, nobody gave a damn about me after all.

Scary, isn’t it?

Just writing it down gives me the willies.

It’s not just dying, although that’s certainly gruesome. It’s being forgotten. Down deep, I believe all of us have a primal need to be remembered, to pass something on to future generations, to leave some mark on the world saying, “I was here.”

If we’re being honest, I think maybe that’s one of the reasons many of us start blogging. There’s something immensely comforting about knowing your thoughts are out there for the whole world to read. You could kick the bucket tomorrow, but your words will live on, teaching, inspiring, and taking root in the minds of readers for generations to come.

Or at least that’s the idea.

What really happens, of course, is that you pour your heart and soul into a post, and no one seems to care. No comments, no links, no nothing. Come on over, friends, and check out my blog. We’re watching my ideas die in real time. Yuk, yuk, yuk.

And it’s disturbing.

When you pull up your blog, and you see it says “0 comments” next to every post, you feel like nothing has changed. Once again, you’re slipping through the cracks, passing into oblivion, one more nobody with a stupid little blog, God save your soul.

The good news?

It can change. You just have to realize your writing by itself isn’t a magic key to immortality. If you want that, you have to be unforgettable. You have to touch people so deeply, connect with them so powerfully that your ideas are burned into their minds.

Here’s how:

Say hello to the walking dead

What? You thought your readers were alive?

Heavens no. If you doubt me, just walk into any restaurant, and watch people for an hour or two.

First, you have the corporate drone, a stack of papers in one hand, a cell phone in the other, hurriedly shoveling food in their mouth so they can get back to a job they hate.

Next, you have the married couple who take a few bites of food, glance up, and blink in surprise because they forgot their spouse was there.

And lastly, you have the old folks who would never admit it, but for them, the restaurant is just a waiting room for the funeral parlor.

The common characteristic that binds them all together:

They’re bored out of their minds.

Just look at their eyes. They’re not even there. Somewhere along the way, their mind and heart and soul drifted off to sleep, and their body is operating on autopilot, keeping them alive until something interesting happens.

If that’s not upsetting enough, here’s one more cold, hard truth:

These people are our readers!

If you aren’t getting any comments or links or shares, it’s not because your blog sucks, necessarily. It’s because your readers are the walking dead. They can’t even remember what your post is about, much less think of something intelligent to say.

If you want interaction, you have to wake them up. You have to break them out of their stupor. You have to pump some freaking life back into their veins, so just for a few minutes, they can be human again.

Let’s talk about how…

Examine the patient for signs of life

The good news is they’re not all dead. They’re only mostly dead, which as anyone who has seen The Princess Bride knows, means they are slightly alive.

Your job as a writer is to find that life.

You have to watch them. You have to talk to them. You have to study them the way a doctor examines a patient suffering from some mysterious illness.


You’re searching for a spark. Buried down deep inside, they have hidden fears, dreams, desires, and hatreds, and every once in a while, those emotions will leap to the surface, giving you a clue about how to bring them back.

The corporate drone slips on his earbuds and fingers an air guitar when he thinks no one is watching. The bored housewife receives a phone call from her daughter in college and laughs and giggles like a school girl. The old fart snatches up a newspaper and begins cursing the stupidity of politicians.

One moment, their eyes are dull and glassy. The next, they’re shining with emotion.

One moment, their skin is gray and waxy. The next, it’s a glowing pink.

One moment, their body is stiff and awkward. The next, it’s full of vitality.

It’s like watching someone come to life, although that’s not exactly true, of course. They were always alive. It’s like they just forgot for a while, and they need someone to remind them.


That “someone” is you.

Attach the jumper cables

Leave a car sitting idle for a few weeks, and what happens?

The battery dies. Not because anything is wrong with it, necessarily, but because no one has been using it.

And how do we charge it up?


We get a car with a fully charged battery, connect the two with jumper cables, and then rev the engine.

Well, people’s emotions work sort of the same way. If you’ve not been using them for a while, it’s hard to get them started again, and often times, we need someone else to give us a boost.

As writers, that’s our job.

Your readers are the dead batteries. You are the live one. The written word is your pair of jumper cables.

The secret is knowing where, exactly, to connect those cables.

On the reader’s side, you have to connect them to a place where your reader is at least slightly alive. Otherwise, you’re just wasting your energy, which is what many writers do. That’s why studying your audience is so critical.

On your own side, you have to connect those jumper cables to exactly the same place as you connected them to the reader, kind of like matching the positive and negative terminals. In other words, what turns them on has to turn you on too. Big time.


Because, baby, it’s time to rev that engine.

Rev your engine

Look at any piece of great writing, and you’ll notice it has a certain electricity to it.

It’s not just ink on paper or pixels on a screen. It’s raw energy in printed form.

Where does that energy come from?

The writer.

If you read Steven King, you can’t help but feel how he enjoys telling stories of everyday people and their struggle to find the courage to stand up against the psychopathic baddies who threaten their worlds.

If you read Seth Godin, you can’t help but feel his passion for extraordinary people who create extraordinary businesses to change the world in extraordinary ways.

If you read Chuck Palahniuk, you can’t help but feel the rage of an underclass who feels caged by society and yearns to break free, even if that means violence and blood and death.

It’s not a trickle of emotion. It’s a roaring flood, a tidal wave of feeling that lifts you up and carries you along for a ride.

Not surprisingly, that’s why it’s popular. Because if you feel the way the author does, it charges you up.

So how do you write with that kind of emotion?

You rev your engine. You charge yourself up. You do your battle chant.

Instead of sitting down and writing cold, imagine the emotion you want to create in your reader, and deliberately cultivate that emotion in yourself. Cry, laugh, get so mad you nearly beat your keyboard to death.

Then let it loose. Let it flow through you and into your words.

Your readers will feel it. They’ll wake up. It’ll make them feel alive.

And they’ll remember you forever.

How to be unforgettable

It’s not about how smart you are.

It’s not about the professionalism of your blog design.

It’s not even about giving readers tips they can go out and apply immediately.

It’s about the way you make those readers feel.

You want them to cry. You want them to laugh out loud. You want them to shake with anger.

But the most important part?

You want them to feel alive.

You’ve felt it with other art forms, right? You go to a great concert or act or movie, and when it finishes, you feel a little bit different? A little bit more awake?

Well, great writing does that too, and the beautiful part is it can affect people on a mass scale. You can write a great post once, and thousands or even hundreds of thousands of people will be affected by it.

Do you realize how incredibly precious that is?

It means you’re not just here to inform. It means you’re not just here to entertain. It means you’re not just here to persuade.

Those little pixels on the computer screen can change somebody’s life.

After writing this post on ProBlogger, one guy actually emailed to tell me he was planning to commit suicide, and my post talked him out of it. It spoke to him exactly where he was, gave him exactly the message he needed to hear, and reached him at exactly the right time.

Honestly, I feel better about that than all the money I’ve made in my life. I set out to write a post that would affect people, and it did, maybe in the biggest way possible.

The point?

It’s time to start taking your work seriously

When you sit down to write, don’t publish just another blog post. Don’t give your readers just another tip. Don’t tell just another cute story.

Set their freaking hair on fire.

Write with so much passion and energy and enthusiasm they can’t stay asleep. You want them to feel like somebody shocked them with a defibrillator.

Because that’s what you have to do: bring them back to life. Maybe not forever, maybe not even for a day, but for an hour or two, give them such a charge they feel like a different person.

Do that, and they won’t just move on to the next post, forgetting about you forever.

They’ll write a comment. They’ll share your post with their friends. They’ll subscribe to your blog, so they can come back for more.

And then you can shock them again and again and again until they find their spark for good.

From then on, you’ll be their hero. They’ll think about you every day. You’ll be, quite literally, unforgettable.

But the best part?

When your time does come, you’ll know you made a difference

I don’t know about you, but when I pass into the great beyond, I won’t be thinking about comment counts or traffic stats or the number of subscribers on my mailing list. I’ll think about the guy who decided not to commit suicide, the young girl who made enough money to get off food stamps, the overworked dad who was able to quit the rat race and spend time with his kids.

Those are the things that matter. Those are the things we are working for. Those are the things we need to build our entire businesses around.

That’s why we’re here. That’s why we matter.

So get to work.

Your readers are waiting for you.

About the Author: Jon Morrow has asked repeatedly to be called “His Royal Awesomeness” but no one listens to him. So, he settles for CEO of Boost Blog Traffic, LLC. Poor man. :-)
How to Be Unforgettable by


  1. Marius Price
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:34:50

    Hey Jon

    Another great blog post :) Just wonder how the hack you got so much traffic to your site in that short of time :) ?


  2. Ruth Zive
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:39:00

    I’ll remember you Jon :-). But, please God, you needn’t worry about that for many, many years to come.

    I agree with your point about the fear of being forgotten. But I don’t agree that my readers (or prospective readers) are necessarily the walking dead.

    I think that most of them are engaged, enthusiastic and eager professionals – seeking to hone their skills and grow their business.

    The challenge for us, as writers, (and your strategies still hold true here) is to distinguish ourselves from the masses – what do we offer that is more compelling, more effective, more exciting?

    Maybe I’m just giving the audience too much credit. But I actually think that those folks scouring the blogosphere for useful advice and insight tend to be more ‘awake’ than the general population.

  3. Jon
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:39:03

    Marius: I have strange and mysterious powers. :-)

    • Alexander
      Jul 14, 2014 @ 07:47:02

      It may seem like that. You had a really loving mom. That appears to be so rare that it looks miraculous.

  4. Nikhil Goyal
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:39:38

    Well, you certainly did spark something in me. I admit, I started a blog, but did not put in my entire energy, entire enthusiasm into it.

    I understand what exactly needs to be done, or so I think.

    And really “walking Dead” part was a bit humorous.

    Time to put some soul into my blog post.

  5. Jason Anthony
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:40:40

    I believe that when you sit down to provide a service, write, or even guest post, that if you put your absolute best into it, good things will come.

    Doing things that matter, providing that little or vast piece of something extra and beyond the necessary is the mark of greatness. Great piece here, John!

  6. Jana
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:40:45

    Oh. my. goodness. This is just what I needed to hear today. I am in the middle of writing a post slightly half heatedly and this gave my engine a jump start! Thank you so much Jon, I love reading your writing. And it won’t be forgotten!

  7. Scott Ellis
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:41:04


    This might just be the single best post you’ve ever written. It’s already got me thinking a little differently about how I might approach my own writing and, more importantly, to be less afraid to inject some genuine, even slightly over-the-top, personality into it.

    Thank you for this… and keep up the good work.

  8. Shane Arthur
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:41:12

    I won’t forget you, Jon Tzu!

  9. Charlene Christiano
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:41:12

    Thanks for the post on what the majority of humans live like. As a 27 year veteran of healthcare, and one who actually helped people die a good death, I can honestly say you just about hit it dead on (pun intended) about what people go through at the end of their lives. They wonder about how people will remember them, but more importantly they talk about what they “would of, could of, should of” done. Many regret not living life to the fullest and loving people more. Well, we have the opportunity to show our love to the world like never before, wide open on the internet. So, let’s wake up the living dead and be remembered.

  10. Sarah Farrugia
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:41:19

    Thx Jon. Nicely put. Putting personality into the form is what is so exciting. A medium that gives permission to add your thoughts and ideas into the global mix is indescribable. Thanks for your words.

  11. Gladys
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:41:22

    WOW, WOW, WOW… I love this post. I honestly never thought about experiencing the emotions before writing to get that electricity going. One just has to be careful not to edit the emotion out when chopping down the text in the final blog post edit. Thank you for this enlightening information.

  12. Tom Treanor
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:41:54


    Awesome post. One of the most important things that I’ve already learned from you is that you need to get your readers “off the couch”. Get them to act. Somehow. In some way.

    Now you’ve really put it into perspective. Do we want to go through live as an average blogger, remembered for nothing? Or do we want to really want to get the recognition we (might) deserve?

    “Set their freaking hair on fire” – my new mantra

    Thanks Jon!

  13. Nigel Merrick (Photography Coach)
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:43:15

    Thanks for another “unforgettable” post here :-)) I love the engaging writing style and can’t wait to digest everything in here fully.

    Great work as always!

  14. Andrew Stark
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:43:49

    Hi Jon

    That’s an awesome post, it explains exactly what you need to do, and explains why it’s good to be passionate. I’m going through your 52 Headline Hacks at the moment, and just using these and injecting some passion means I’m able to get posts with comments into double figures vs last year where a stoney silence was present.

    Thanks for being able to share your passion for writing and blogging with us.


  15. Jeanette LeBlanc
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:44:34

    Set their freaking hair on fire!

    Yes – loved this!

  16. Derek
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:44:36

    Love it! I think your story alone draws in the attention of anyone.. most of us can relate with feeling forgotten or left out.

    @Marius – Jon has a huge following.. the power of a single email.. thats what got me here in the first place 😉

  17. Marius Price
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:45:40

    Re: Marius: I have strange and mysterious powers.

    That’s nice one :) but maybe you can tell us more about getting traffic in your next blog post.


    • Joy ONeill
      Mar 11, 2013 @ 19:43:13

      That WAS about getting traffic!

  18. Shane Arthur
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:46:22

    P.S. Jon, you’re the only one I know that should put a warning sign next to his subscribe to comments check box. How can I forget you when a new comment every three seconds reminds me? :)

  19. Gladys
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:46:55

    I have to add to my previous comment…This is the first time I read a post twice. I LOVED IT and it struck me to the core…

  20. Marius Price
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:47:28

    @Derek yea but having an email list you need traffic :) so will be great to know more about his techniques.


    • Kiki
      Jul 03, 2014 @ 13:21:42

      Just keep repeating stupid comments on popular blogs. That’ll build yout”list.”

  21. Dan Sumner
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:49:20

    Hey John,

    A very inspirational post.

    It’s great to see you and teaching how to inject personality and feelings into writing.

    Thanks for sharing.


  22. Rheo
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:49:29

    Long time reader, first time commenter. Great post and great advice. I spend too much time thinking about a topic for my next post and it just ends up being a meaningless entry. More often than not, I opt not to post at all because I can’t even inspire myself with the topic. I definitely need to focus more on the people around me and take note of the discussions that engage me and everyone else. It’s from there that I will find the energy to make a difference.

  23. Thomas
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:49:37

    Sorry, I got distracted….

  24. Leanne Regalla
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:51:05

    Jon, love your posts. I’m already a mostly on-fire kinda person and you constantly crank up the fuel.

    I’m dead when I’m plowing through business books and taxes, like the last couple of weeks. But you remind me why it’s worth it, and why I hired a bookkeeper to take over this crap starting this year, so I can devote more time to writing! 😉

  25. Susan
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:51:11

    So well written and inspiring! Awesome. Thank you Jon.

  26. Andrew
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:55:33

    I will remember the part about setting their hair on fire.

    Thanks for demonstrating what you preach!

  27. Racheal Cook
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:56:27

    Love this post Jon! Yes people need to WAKE UP and make things happen. And if making a difference and leaving a legacy is a piece of the puzzle, then really injecting yourself into all your communications is essential. Brava!

  28. veehcirra
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 12:58:20

    Wow Jon, it’s like I was going on an emotional trip reading this. Anxiousness, laughter and seriousness…no wonder you are who are. Great stuff.

  29. r.dernister
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:00:38

    Remember who?? Oh yeah, old Whatssisname. Is he still dead?

  30. Ken Stadden
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:02:03

    Great post, John. I’m taking the energy from your post, attaching the jumper cables to my new blog, and just to be safe, I’ll be setting my hair on fire at the same time.

  31. Jeff Yin
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:03:03

    Wow…I’m just getting ready to launch my own website/blog, and this is just the sort of advice I need to do some inspired writing. I skimmed this post, and thought it was too long, but before I knew it I had read the whole thing. Guess that’s the power of setting our hair on fire! :)

    I particularly appreciate your suggestion to feel the emotion you want to evoke before writing. I’ve gotten to the point where I can have the message that I want to convey in mind as I write, but actually feeling the emotion is brilliant. I’m definitely going to use that.

    BTW, your Headline Hacks is an awesome resource, and I’m psyched to use that as well!


  32. Ken Stadden
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:03:11

    Doh. I had “Jon” in my had and wrote “John.” See, people are starting to forget you while you are still alive…

  33. Ken Stadden
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:03:58

    HEAD. Not had. You’d think I had a 3-martini lunch.

    Over and out.

  34. Amanda @runtothefinish
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:05:25

    Amazing! Striking enough that I had to comment from my phone which in itself is nearly worse than death. Thank you fit the reminders and the motivation to allow myself to love my writing rather than a time table.

  35. Jim McFarland
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:07:21

    Awesome Post Jon. It IS what we do…we change lives through the very energy and raw buzz of our words. They hum with the electricity of our own spirit- they go in through eyes, on to brains, and hopefully down into hearts; to change their lives forever. We offer up inflection points, points in their lives at which they know without a doubt, once they read our words, they will forever be different. Changed. Elevated. Inspired. Thanks for that “Zap” Jon!

  36. Kevin
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:08:12

    Jon, Even though I am not an enrolled student of yours (yet?), you are already unforgettable to many of us. Thanks for this great article and even more for your remarkable presence and continuing deeper inspiration beyond the mere superficial. Your heart makes you a giant. I hope someday to stand respectably in your shadow.

    Wishing you Inner Peace, Outer Harmony and Joy All Around
    Your Companion on the Road,
    Kevin Joseph Klein

  37. Laura Rajsic-Lanier
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:11:40

    Jon —

    Another great post! You can add yourself to those writers that fire us up!

  38. Jon
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:15:04

    Charlene: Yeah, the reason I was able to write about it is because I’ve almost died several times, and those were the things I thought about. You really do wonder who will remember you.

  39. Jon
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:15:30

    Gladys: Yes, editing really can neuter a post, especially when someone else is doing the editing. They have to understand not just grammar and style but the emotion of a post as well, and sadly, most editors don’t.

  40. Jon
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:15:48

    Tom: Always nice to get a comment from you, man. Yeah, getting them “off the couch” is essential, especially if you are selling something. This just takes it a step further.

  41. Jon
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:16:12

    Andrew: Glad you’re getting results! We may have to do a case study or something. :-)

  42. Dr Cory Annis, The MD For Entrepreneurs)
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:16:32


    John, this post IS a defibrillator! And anyone left unaffected by it is beyond hope. Thanks for the encouragement to run around with my paddles on “charge”! 😉

  43. Tess
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:16:44

    My hair is on fire!

  44. Ruan | EbooksTutorialsAndGuides
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:17:02

    Ha Ha! I am burning inside to give away Jon’s secret for getting all this traffic! 😉

    Don’t worry Jon, your secret is save with me, for a little while longer at least 😉

    Great post Jon; I’ve got new inspiration to dive into the minds of my readers and give them memorable posts when I soon start my new blog after the long-awaiting book release!

    As always; great work sir! :)

  45. Dan Blystone
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:17:37

    What a great feeling that must have been to have reached someone at a key moment with an uplifting, change inspiring message.

    I remember reading a blog post by Darren Rowse about a troubling time he experienced and a person who inspired him, so it’s kind of fitting that the post was published on ProBlogger!

  46. Stan Dubin
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:21:36

    with the guy on the slab, the guy screaming into the stethoscope, and the charging cords…unforgettable.

  47. Jon
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:23:34

    Marius: This is a traffic technique. The more you touch people, the more likely they are to share your work. Also, the more likely they are to come back.

  48. Jon
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:24:03

    Rheo: So happy you decided to come out of the shadows! The first step to setting other people on fire is to set yourself on fire. You have to really, really care what you’re writing about. You have to care even more than your readers.

  49. Lorna Faith
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:24:09

    Thanks so much for the inspiration and helpful advice once again Jon:-) You will definitely be remembered! I really needed that reminder to make my readers feel…to make them come alive! Love it…that’s what I want to learn to do better…so that in some small way I too can make a difference in people’s lives :-) You’re awesome Jon…thanks so much for helping so many of us!

  50. Jon
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:24:24

    Ken: No worries. I answer to both. :-)

  51. Elizabeth Cottrell (RiverwoodWriter)
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:25:10

    Eeegads, Jon, you set MY freakin’ hair on fire with this post!

    The lesson here for me is that my own freakin’ hair better be on fire too, or else I can’t transmit the passion and urgency you’re talking about. I’ll be thinking about this one for a long time.

    And just for the record, Jon Morrow, if you took leave of this island home tonight, you’d be leaving a heck of a lot of people better off, happier, more fulfilled, and making a difference because you taught them how to connect with their inner fire. What more can someone say about us at the end of our lives than “He/She made a difference and will be missed.” You’ve got that part nailed, so now you can concentrate on sticking around for awhile, okay?

  52. W Brian Duncan (AKA IPBrian)
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:34:46

    As always a great perspective John…I know I feel like the walking dead most days and I actively try to keep myself awake.

  53. Sandra Mauck
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:35:55

    Jon – my target audience are those you described as “waiting for the funeral parlor” except THOSE are not my target audience, they are the ones who are involved in their 60’s, 70’s and 80’s with intention, purpose and joy and who want to make a bigger difference in the world through sharing with all generations what a wonderful time of life the Third Trimester truly is. Having said that, there are those I do want to wake up to that possibility, but I believe they can be and I loved your post showing me how!! Thank you.

  54. W Brian Duncan (AKA IPBrian)
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:36:33

    AARG…darn fingers being faster than my brain…I do know how you spell your name Jon…apologies for that last typing problem. :-)

  55. steph
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:38:19

    Dear Jon, I love you. I just wanted to say that as one of those zombie people who doesn’t comment on blogs, your posts truly do wake me up and get me excited about sitting down at my desk.

    You’re doing so much right. Thank you.

  56. Johanna Fenton
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:40:27

    Jon, I liked this a lot. There’s something different about the way you write. This is it, huh? Exactly what you wrote here – waking the slightly alive. (I love Princess Bride.) You know, I think there’s another side to this. It’s being your own most bored reader. I often pretend I’m writing to myself, and I imagine just how very bored I am by my own voice. Do you ever do that? Do you ever get bored with yourself, and have to write yourself out of boring yourself??

  57. Mark Conger
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:51:16

    This post is just one more reason I keep reading your stuff. You’re in my head. Please, stay there.

  58. RCasa
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:52:37

    Great post – needed a good kick in the ass today , thanks

  59. James Early
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 13:55:56

    Jon, As everyone else has said, this is just what I needed to hear today. It helps me set some major priorities for what I’m doing, should and shouldn’t be doing.

  60. Sue Burness
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:05:54

    I love this Jon. We all have access to WAY more information than we will ever use. What we need is the ability to access our FEELINGS!

  61. Nuria Freixas
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:10:17

    Many thanks Jon, I love your post!

  62. Bob and Anna Bassett
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:16:21

    Great post, Jon, and very timely! We were just discussing how we were tired of holding back and being overpolite in our articles. Thanks for the flaming boot to the butt!

  63. Nancy Tierney
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:18:46

    Man, I needed this today! Snapped me right out of my own “walking dead” state around writing, blogging and that “What’s the point?” state of mind. Keep the fire burning, baby!

  64. Bill Perry
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:18:59

    Marius: I LOVE your name. The first time I encountered the name Marius was in Anne Rice’s vampire books. LOVE that name!

    Jon: You are a sneaky bastard. You wrote this post using the strategy you were reading about! I think I exploded inside as i read this, and it’s made me realize a big part of why my blog posts quite likely suck balls. Thanks brother!

  65. Mary E. Ulrich
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:21:30

    Interesting as always Jon.

    This morning I learned that a friend died over the weekend in a bike accident. He was a major player in the field of people with severe disabilities and yet, in the newspaper blog that told of his death, his life was summed up in one sentence and the comments were all about the bike path in the community. This guy was creative, thoughtful, a fierce advocate–and yet when his guts were strewn all over the highway the commenters only discussed how he should have been on a bike path.

    I’ve been in such a funk about my blog for a l0ng time. I’m going to try and write something today–but my passion is not fashionable, not fun. But, you’re right. It is a way of saying my message to the world, and maybe that should be enough.

  66. Debra Torres
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:23:16

    Thanks Jon,
    I write a Christian Devotional Blog and I admit, I sometimes do think more about my traffic more than the people I am impacting. Thanks for the reminder. Also, thanks for encouraging me to write from my heart.

  67. Servando Silva
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:34:20

    Wow, so your own post is actually your example for what you-re writing.
    I’ve never seen my readers like that, but it’s a very interesting way o think about them. You need to take our the most and the best of each of your reader. Help them get better and they’ll help you too.

  68. Robert Chen
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:38:04

    Excellent post! I loved the part on getting into your emotions and unleashing them like a tidal wave through the post. Congrats on creating such a valuable blog and thanks for impacting me enough to write this comment and to improve the way I blog and live life.

  69. Tommy Walker
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:39:58

    Jon, this reminds me of the “Made to Stick” lesson you taught in your guest blogging course.

    People have that guessing machine that just keeps on anticipating what comes next and it makes them bored.

    But when you break the guessing machine, you stand out and bring them back to life.

    My question is, how do you go about conditioning yourself to absorb bigger and bigger charges so you can continuously blast your readers back to life?

  70. Lisa Robbin Young
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:42:01

    So many of us forget that if it doesn’t make us sit up and take notice, why should our readers give a crap?

    We get caught up in blogging “schedules” and other “shoulds” of the business of blogging and forget that people want to read our stuff because it resonates with them, because it’s valuable to them, because it wakes them up out of their stupor. Well said, Jon!

    When I sit down to craft a post lately, it’s coming from a place where I can’t NOT say it anymore. That seems to be a place where some of my better work comes from. You know that “I’m mad as hell, and I can’t take it anymore!” kind of place?

    Yeah. That one seems to open the eyes of readers… and comments tend to follow.

  71. Jon
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:43:50

    Mary: sorry to hear about your friend. That’s rough. For your blog topic, you want to find something you are passionate about AND other people are passionate about. Remember, the jumper cables have to be connected to the same place on both people.

  72. Amandah
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:44:01

    Powerful opening! I think a lot of writers are afraid to be authentic because of backlash from others. I also think that reading too many books on how to be a top blogger, top freelance writer, etc., can work against you. If you constantly focus on the ‘business side,’ the creative side could suffer. And in the long run both sides could suffer.

    By the way, I like how you mentioned, “It’s not about the professionalism of your blog design.” I’m not a web designer, and I often get caught up with how my blogs/websites look. I need to stop it and focus on writing.

  73. Mark Davidson
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:46:32

    Good writing is all about emotion and feeling… And as you’ve demonstrated, imagery helps.

  74. Jon
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:53:18

    Tommy: I personally try to immerse myself in passion. I read books by passionate authors, listen to passionate music, study passionate speeches. It charges me up. Also, I take at least a few minutes every day to think about things that really matter to me, and that helps too.

  75. Tommy Walker
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:54:40

    Jon: I’d love to see what your music collection looks like :-)

  76. Johanna Fenton
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 14:55:42

    I second that. (Re: Tommy’s comment)

  77. Merl Miller
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 15:01:16

    You did indeed start with a scary topic. I am learning a lot from you, Jon. Thanks for all that you do!

  78. Maria Hill
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 15:11:28

    Genius, Jon! You are a brilliant writer and a joy to read. You also walk your talk. Thank you for a truly unforgettable post. I like that I can come back to it if I am having trouble finding the mojo in my writing.

  79. Michael Corley
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 15:24:12

    OK Jon,

    I read your message loud and clear!

    I’m going back to my post I started before reading this recent update and pump some life into it to “resucitate” my audience with the vigor, passion and emotion they’ll read into it because it speaks to them in a personal way.

    See you back here on your next update.

  80. Juha Liikala
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 15:35:34

    What a great ending (to a great story!). It truly is about those great emails from readers isn’t it. – not the stats. It’s an incredible feeling to get a personal email from someone who (without asking) just tells you how they’ve found help from the things you write. It’s absolutely priceless. Ok, time to set some hair on fire. Thanks Jon!

  81. Linda Caroll
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 15:37:18

    I agree with Ruth. (comment #2) Also with you. Yes, people go through life glassy eyed. A LOT.

    I don’t think they’re bored and walking dead. I think they’re harried, hurried, overworked & overwhelmed.

    And in our rush to grab their eyeballs, bloggers post stuff like 71 tips for… 91 ways to… 101 secrets of… and I have to wonder – is that helpful? Give me ONE good story (like your paradise post on Darren’s site) that I can dive into and enjoy — or give me the 5 BEST tips that I can actually implement right now.

    Maybe we also need to ask – not just if we’re writing with emotion — but ask ourselves if we’re adding to the overwhelm, or helping reduce it.

    I DO think we need to do a better job connecting — you’re spot on there.

  82. Jason "J-Ryze" Fonceca
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 15:44:25

    Yes Jon, yes, yes, yes.

    I 100% agree. Love it.

    And you practice what you preach, demonstrating it well in this post.

    This post helped me feel alive.

    You opened with an impact – ‘personal nightmare’.
    You referenced the Princess Bride.
    Your name is known, and I’d say you’re ‘tough to forget’.

    I’ve lurked (listening to you and JBT go back and forth often…), and I’m glad to be here.

    I teach what you’re talking about to others and I live it myself, writing posts like this:

    I’m also about to submit a copyblogger as a call-out to the ‘Dead State’ of the blog-scene, aiming to breath new life into it, and this post has just inspired me even more. (your name/link is dropped more than once :P)

    Anyway, thank you for being one of the most badass bloggers I know. I’ve never taken your guest-posting course, but your influence and inspiration has reached me in many different ways.

    P.S. One minor heads up: “A day or two later, I’m cremated with five other bodies, all of us too important to even get our own urn.”

    I think you meant *UN*important 😉

  83. Julie
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 16:05:05

    Damn, Jon, you did it again.

    “Set their freaking hair on fire” ??!!

    Won’t be forgetting you in a hurry 😉

  84. Jean
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 16:06:52

    That’s true! But just think, all the former things will pass away when you die and the great news is that there will be a resurrection of the dead, those who are in God’s memory.

  85. Dave Young
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 16:51:15

    With just 3 posts, your new blog has become my favorite. You rock.

  86. The Droid
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 16:51:33

    hahaha the funny thing is, no one will remember your name after you’ve gone. bloggers: always thinking that they matter. what a joke.

  87. Ingrid Foster
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 16:57:01

    Thank you, and yes, I will remember you!

  88. Debbie@happymaker
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 17:05:55

    Ok, Jon I see i am way at the bottom of the list here for comments, but I just had to say, Great Job, but hey you already know that. No worries it is nice to hear anyway, RIGHT!

    Blogging is about helping people, so I am going to let you go now and see how many I can help, since we have a wonderful teacher. Stay humble Now, LOL!

  89. David Esrati
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 17:14:21

    I’d suggest if you really want to be unforgettable, learn to be more succinct.
    Or- you can take lessons from Sally Hogshead- with her “How to Fascinate”
    This superstar from the ad world writes things that I can’t forget- starting with her “Radical Truth #15” “Aspire to be the dumbest person in the room.”
    Think about it- and how she said it.

  90. Todd Tresidder
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 17:51:20

    Jon – I’ll always remember you as the guy who took blog posting to another level – a serious profession. When I took your guest blogging class you set the writing bar at a level I had never seen before.

    Not only that, you used your own work to illustrate with examples thus walking the talk.

    That is my memory, and it is a good and important one. No, you won’t be forgotten… at least by me.

  91. Jenn
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 18:23:32

    Thank you…I am awake!

  92. Ron Climer
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 19:00:27


    Thanks for a great post. You are deadly accurate in your assessment of the problem. Your solution is just right also.

  93. Joe Bulger
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 19:08:00

    You mattered to me Jon.

    I have to ask you something personal… does the widespread boredom and zombie mentality rub you especially raw in respect to your challenging circumstances? People making so little effort to grow or contribute when they have so much within reach?

  94. Marjory Pilley
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 20:04:17

    Thank you for the motivating post. I think about food blogs and often think the reader is simply looking for info-short and sweet is better. Now I am totally inspired to ratchet up my posts about food and make the reader drool for more.

  95. Meagan
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 20:36:53

    What a great post! It seems like most people in my niche are always writing how to posts, the best of this & 50 ways to do that, but this, this passion, this energy & motivation, this connections is something I need to remember to include in my posts. I want to deliver value to my readers, but inspiration & motivation is value… not just an actionable task. Thanks Jon… for giving me a jump start today!

  96. Sydney Aaliyah
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 20:56:24

    “Set their freaking hair on fire.” That is exactly what this post did for me. Thanks for the much needed kick in the ass.

  97. William
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 21:05:57

    WOW..This has got to rank in the top 5 Greatest blog posts I have ever read. You really did show a picture of life that I see all to often as I watch people. The best part, it will help me set the mood when I start to write each day. Without a spark, the spark plug isn’t doing it’s job. Thanks for giving me a better way of looking at what I am doing…

  98. Steven A. Lowe
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 22:44:53

    Epic. Again.

  99. Paula Shillington
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 22:46:51

    I agree….they are the walking dead. I have been a Career Cousellor and have seen lifeless people walk in to my rooms. They have no passion and are stuck in that cloud that defines them..’society’. You only have to be brave enough to speak a truth when it doesn’t fit with everyone else’s thinking. Thanks for encouraging us to be brave.

  100. Harleena Singh
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 23:00:15

    Awesome post Jon!

    I was totally lost all through the post, especially the gripping start and the rest of the post :)

    You are so right about being forgotten the moment you are gone, and yes, the very next day the birds chirp, the sun rises and people leave for their work as usual- just as if nothing has happened. Life carries on, whether you are there or not there, simple as that. What does make a difference is how you live your life, and what marks you leave behind – isn’t it?

    People are surely bored or get used ot seeing the same routine things or people around them. And you are right about brining them back to life by pumping them with things that they like attaching them to the jumper cables, and they start shning right back!

    I loved the way you beautifully explained about feeling the emotions yourself first and then letting it loose, letting it flow through us to the readrs, and they surely do feel it. This is something I try doing a lot through my posts and comments as well, as I strongly feel that making that connection with people holds more importance than anything else. You got to sense the pulse of your readers and make them feel what you are feeling or even to come up and share their feelings.

    People remember you for the little differences you make into their lives, about how you affect their lives- just as you nearly stopped the person from committing suicide, which must have made you feel that you have achieved everything – isn’t it?

    Thanks so much for sharing this beautiful and inspirational post with all of us. Being a feelance writer I can well understand the power of words and the amount we can really do with them. You motivated me to try out things and do them differenly as well. :)

  101. Sergio Felix
    Apr 02, 2012 @ 23:29:18

    Hey Jon,

    Thanks for sharing that incredible story (the suicidal guy) and the scary story from the opening as well.

    I got the most important points down: write with passion, energy and enthusiasm.

    Hope I can start transmitting those in my own site really soon.


    PS. Take care and enjoy ‘Semana Santa’.

  102. Geoffrey
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 01:13:24

    Hi Jon

    When I think of you, I think of the quiet but brilliant billionaire (Dr. Virgil Swann) from Smallville. He may be in a wheel chair, but he achieved and did so much from it…. more than those that had all their faculties about them.

    From this day forth I pledge to leave zombie land and take a leave of permanent absence from the walking dead. All hail Jon Morrow may he ever be remembered.

    Okay I got a bit carried away… But what an awesome blog post. You definitely applied the jumper cables to my reality. :)

  103. The Ninja Baker
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 05:03:40

    Hai-ya! You’ve punched this Ninja Baker in the solar plexus and inspired a whole new approach. Many thanks, Jon.

  104. Kate Baker
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 07:35:13

    An absolutely cracking post! Really enjoyed reading it, thankyou.

  105. Philip Quintas
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 08:39:34

    HELLO! Every once in a while I read something so brilliant that it sticks with me forever. This is one of those things.

  106. Donald
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 09:33:25

    Great post. Very enlightening, informative and inspiring.

  107. Nicki
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 10:48:44

    Wow – you certainly woke me up this morning. This has to be the best post I have read – ever. Thanks you.

  108. Todd Gray
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 11:01:26

    Thank you for the excellent tips Jon! Many people are “walking dead” just as you describe, these are the people who are stuck in a routine. Fortunately many people are also awake and alert and looking to improve their lives, which your blog helps them to do! One of the things I teach people to do is to control their ‘state’ by paying attention to what they Focus upon, the Language that they use, and their Physiology – this is in essence what you are suggesting that we do with our readers… influence their state. Love it.

  109. Ross McCabe III
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 12:20:52


    You remind me that great writing requires the author to think about the audience’s emotional reactions before you type the first word. You address the fears and desires of the reader. It feels like you’re talking to me in each post.

  110. Lon Hetrick
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 12:53:31

    Love your writing style. Love your opening analogy. But I have a question about this post: It sounds like you’re advocating a communication approach somewhat analogous to that of a talk radio host, which is (as far as I can tell) “be controversial, or at least, provocative.” Is that what you think bloggers should aim for? Interested in your reply. Thanks very much!

  111. Ahlam
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 13:17:17

    I literally laughed out loud at some lines, and grappled with others. Is it possible to hug words? Thank you for making me feel alive today.

  112. Gail
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 13:19:58

    Jon – you make good points about storytelling, writing and setting your world (and the world of your readers) on fire. It does sadden me, however, that your perspective of the human condition is lackluster – or rather that humans appear to be lackluster, until something outside of themselves sparks them to life. While it may be the case for some, I do not believe it is for the majority.

    A story told with passion and fire ignites our imagination and draws us in – not because we are only partly alive, but because we sense a strong spirit in another. The same is true for two people telling the exact same story – one in a monotone voice who puts everyone to sleep; and the other with excitement and interest, who draws you to the edge of your seat, anxious to learn the smallest details and to engage with the speaker.

    We all want to engage, and to feel a part of, someone or something. When that connection comes from within us, we become better able to communicate our thoughts in a way that enthralls the reader and keeps them waiting for that next story.

    But, I don’t think that the reader turns away because THEY are partly alive – I think they turn away because they sense that the writer is.

    And seriously, no one wants to be partly alive!

  113. Alyssa
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 13:22:15

    thank you.
    you’re awesome.
    please keep it coming!!
    that’s all.

  114. ML Awanohara
    Apr 03, 2012 @ 22:36:30

    I found merit in the post, but one of your points disturbed me:

    And lastly, you have the old folks who would never admit it, but for them, the restaurant is just a waiting room for the funeral parlor.

    I don’t think it’s quite fair of you to lump together people who are coming to the end of their lives with younger people who aren’t fully alive.

    First, there are lots of examples of older people who are still compos mantis and, because of that, even more determined to make use of the time they have left. I so happen to be watching a program featuring the great Harvard socio-biologist E.O. Wilson and the great Columbia neuroscientist Eric Kandel, both 82, as I type this. Both are still going strong.

    Second, less engaged older people — who are, as you say, “waiting for funeral parlor” — are often that way because they are afflicted with Alzheimer’s or dementia, very cruel diseases that attack the brain.

    The people in the former camp may not have time to read blog posts; those in the latter, couldn’t even if they wanted to.

    As I’ve come to learn by taking care of older people in my own family, old age is another country; they do things differently there. I think we younger people, who aren’t quite there yet, need to respect them for those differences. After all, we’ll be old someday, too, that’s if we don’t get sick or injured before that.

  115. Lana
    Apr 04, 2012 @ 01:22:27

    Jon, I admire you and I read your blog with enjoyment:) I am a writer and I take a lot of time to formulate my posts, which are personal and deeply emotional. They touch my readers and reading the comments is the best part of any day.
    I don’t have a lot of traffic, but I have a core of loyal readers. I would love to make money of writing, but i am aware that it is not going to happen through my blog – the only thing my blog could do for me is bring the attention of an agent or two and lead me to a possible non-fiction essay/memoir/food book:)
    Your posts are always inspirational and I am so glad I found you! I hope you have a wonderful week! You are an amazing person:)

  116. Marius Price
    Apr 04, 2012 @ 07:14:21

    @BILL PERRY thanks man :) By the way i am from Dracula(Vlad Tepes) Country


  117. JaneofAustralia
    Apr 04, 2012 @ 07:57:38

    Jon your wrote: It’s time to start taking your work seriously. I am so there!!!
    That’s right where I am. Right now….

    Can you see me? I am tossing off the Bungee Cord of fear and about to dive into the slipstream of a life filled with deep and meaningful writing. Writing that will reach and touch; stir and empower.

    I know it’s in me.

    You are both a spotlight and a mirror. You rock.

    I am excited. I mean I AM EXCITED!

  118. Rodney C. Davis
    Apr 04, 2012 @ 18:15:08

    Hey Marius, Jon did NOT get all that traffic on his blog in a short time. Hint hint… I was a part of his traffic way before he even started to build his blog.

  119. David Sadler-Smith
    Apr 05, 2012 @ 10:15:00

    Am I a zombie………. I read the post but not sure if I’m fully awake yet. Keep on kicking me…..

    Thanks Jon

    “currently contemplating my navel”

  120. Lynn Hess
    Apr 05, 2012 @ 15:57:21

    I love, love, love the jumper cable analogy. It takes all that same old advice about “finding your ideal reader” and “finding the reader’s pain points” and brings it to life! I have a feeling I’m going to think about those jumper cables (and where I need to apply them) every time I sit down to write now. Thanks, Jon!

  121. Amy Hagerup
    Apr 05, 2012 @ 18:27:47

    I am amazed that I stuck with this post to the end because it was so long. However, this was fantastic. I am so going to remember this and put that emotion in there and keep it in there. Thanks again.

  122. Anne Galivan
    Apr 06, 2012 @ 00:33:14

    It might sound pathetic but I keep a folder in my e-mail entitled “Nice things people say about me.” Because sometimes when we are going through a “dry spell” in terms of getting comments, we need to be reminded that we HAVE touched people at some point, and that really is what matters.

    I love your battery analogy. The concept of giving life to someone who is “mostly dead” is deep. And I don’t say that facetiously.

    My website is dedicated to helping parents find the tools to begin homeschooling but it is ALSO about helping homeschooling parents to get through the tough times, all the while homeschooling their children. Anyone who’s been on my website for any length of time knows that I’ve been through tough times…including the tragic death of more than one family member. When a homeschooling mom is just dragging from the responsibility, or dealing with a family crisis, I’m there to say, “You can still do this.” And I know I’ve helped many, many moms (and some dads too!)

    But it sure would be nice to be getting more comments! So I’ll keep reading your tips Jon…even if I never get over a hundred comments like you do, your tips inspire me to dig down deep and work to touch my readers, not just inform them.

  123. Lindsay
    Apr 06, 2012 @ 14:01:40

    “The written word is your pair of jumper cables.”

    Love it.

  124. Annie Boddington
    Apr 09, 2012 @ 07:03:54

    Hi Jon, you are right about the blog. I was kind of thinking the same thing in many ways, and decided to take my blog offline until I can decide how I am going to inject some energy into it.

    Luv your stuff.

  125. Lia Fairchild
    Apr 10, 2012 @ 16:11:21


    You’ve absolutely said everything I’ve been thinking over the last couple of years. And the opening part is one of the main reasons I wrote a book and still continue to reach out through blogging and social media.

    Guess you’re pretty memorable with all these comments, so congrats! I often sit in public and watch people. It’s not very uplifting to see a crowd of people all staring down at screens too. What ever happened to looking at people and saying hi with a smile?

    Thanks for your insights.


  126. Tammy
    Apr 11, 2012 @ 19:47:05

    Jon, well all righty then! I’ve heard it before, but never quite so eloquently. Never quite with so much ferocity. Never quite with so much conviction. You know your stuff. You are a wonderful writer (but you already know that) and an even better cheerleader (aka: butt kicker). That’s what so many of us writers need, a good kick in the pants and a “Come to Jesus talking to”. Thanks for both. You, sir, are awesome (I’m thinking you already know that too). I don’t always hit them out of the park, but I’m always proud of the end product. But those posts that generated 30 – 40 comments always hit a note of passion. Lesson learned. As always, you delivered to us a post for pondering. Thanks for that.

  127. Jerome Stone
    Apr 13, 2012 @ 16:04:08

    Hey Jon (and everyone else) – As always, your writing cuts through the surface-crap and goes straight to the heart of the matter. How refreshing it would truly be if just for one day, we all woke up with the thought, “Did what I do in this life really matter? How will it all look after I’m gone?” I think that your reflections on life and death as a means to instill greatness are key to living a life that not only fulfills some purpose, but makes it better for others to live their lives. And you, el senor Morrow, truly embody that greatness. Thank you one-hundred-times over for all that you do to help others realize their greatness. Warm regards, Jerome Stone

  128. Caleb
    Apr 13, 2012 @ 18:37:47

    Oh John!
    I’ve been following you for a while now. I even bought your guestblogging course. So why did I just read this article, load up my new blog and realize that I forgot to add my passion to my posts.

    I love photography
    yet all of the stuff I’ve written is the same old boring guides that feature on nearly every other photography blog.

    How do I expect to wake up my audience with stuff like that?
    Thanks for helping me to realize that before it was too late.

  129. Merl Miller
    Apr 13, 2012 @ 19:58:24

    Jerome, good comment. Ronald Regan said I mattered once. Actually, he said it about all Marines but I have a big ego. Seriously, Jerome, I checked out your blog and YOU matter. I was impressed. This is a big issue for me. I am a 70 year old disabled vet and meds are a big deal. I just confirmed and I am looking forward to reading it. Thanks.

  130. nathan
    Apr 14, 2012 @ 07:06:24

    Thanks for setting my hair on fire.

  131. Scott Arrieta
    Apr 23, 2012 @ 21:31:58

    Love, love, LOVE the dead battery analogy!

    I spent an hour trying to explain this to a client of mine while I was reviewing the first draft of copy that she submitted for a new site that we designed for her.

    You summed it up in a paragraph.

    I think I’ll save myself some time and bust out the jumper cables the next time.

  132. Randall Wilburn
    Apr 25, 2012 @ 10:40:44

    Thanks for this post Jon. This was something that I needed to read right now. You definitely hooked your jumper cables up to my battery. I appreciate you and all that you do. Keep up the great work and keep writing because you are changing lives…

  133. Richard
    Apr 25, 2012 @ 20:33:17


    Now I need to go and edit my blog posts…

  134. Carole in The UK
    Apr 26, 2012 @ 05:46:47

    Thanks for jump starting me.
    What a great post. I can honestly say that is the first time I have read such a wordy post, all the way through to the end.
    You certainly had my attention, I just need to put it into action.

    Blessings to you.

  135. Bobbi Emel
    Apr 27, 2012 @ 22:16:38

    I think this post just changed my life for the better.

    Thanks, Jon.

  136. Adrian Raynor
    Apr 30, 2012 @ 14:08:56

    A brilliant exposition!

  137. Eden E @ Evergreen Eden
    May 09, 2012 @ 07:23:11

    One of my Top Ten Most Butt-Kicking, Jaw-Dropping, Eye-Popping Reads to Inspire the Waning Writer in Us All.

    And yes, that is the actual title of the post you just kicked my waning butt into writing! :)

    …And also yes, you can expect to find it listed wayyy up there. Life altering and truly proof that you are unforgettable, practicing EXACTLY what you preach, and fulfilling your greatest calling to. the. HILT.

    Thank you, Jon!!!! God bless you forever!!!!

  138. Marci | Liberating Choices
    May 11, 2012 @ 14:24:26

    Jon, This is one of my favorite posts of the year so far!

    I do feel like reading your posts energizes me. And I love your analogy of revving our engines before we start to write. You have a gift and thank you for sharing it!

  139. Victoria
    May 16, 2012 @ 20:09:03

    I love this! I have not read about this aspect of writing before and it makes a lot of sense. The posts I write that generate the most feedback are always the ones that I write the most passionately about. Thanks for making me think about waking people up.

    BTW – I love the Princess Bride – I recognized the quote right away!

  140. Robin Dickinson
    May 31, 2012 @ 05:35:00

    Thank you so much, Jon. This post has revived me in ways your can’t imagine – or maybe *you* can. :)

    Plus – you’ve given me an outstanding idea for my next toon post.

    Best to you,

    Cheeky biz toonist 😉

  141. Vone
    Oct 18, 2012 @ 12:15:15

    Thank you Jon. You are truly an inspiration to us all.

  142. Dave P
    Oct 18, 2012 @ 12:39:59

    John, great post. Trust me, I’ve noticed how many people sleepwalk through life. Sometimes I’ll just stop and stare at people. Not that I’m some pompous ass who thinks he’s better than everyone else, but it’s easy to tell when people are “there” as opposed to just kind of in a daze.

    I just quit my job today and I’m ready to start waking people up too!

  143. Justin
    Mar 11, 2013 @ 08:43:16

    I think the scariest part about your nightmare is that it will become a reality someday for all of us. (Let’s all scream it together now, “We’re all going to die!”)

    Death doesn’t have to be a nightmare though. Why?

    For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son [Jesus], that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life [in heaven]. John 3:16

    This is the message of the Bible in a nutshell. Believe it and death will just become the beginning of your life. I would also encourage you to check out this powerful YouTube video:

    The Gospel In Four Minutes –

    Thank you.

  144. Janine Gilmour
    Mar 11, 2013 @ 16:33:20

    Hell, ya! Lost beneath the stifling layers of corporate jargon are real people, most the ’em with a pulse. I going out to find the ones who want to shake things up! Thanks for the inspiration Jon, as always, you rock!

  145. Nathasha
    Mar 15, 2013 @ 18:39:45

    This is so awesome that I share the link with others. Love it!

  146. Dave Visaya
    Jul 24, 2013 @ 21:29:06

    I could not imagine how much Ioved this post and I even considered reading this every time i write something new on my blog. you answered so many questions in my mind.

  147. Nimrod Flores
    Sep 20, 2013 @ 03:31:01

    I’ve got myself a lot of zombie readers in my blog also! This is going to be tough to bring them to life. But this list sure gives me something to get started with.. thanks Jon!

  148. Michael Miller
    Oct 02, 2013 @ 22:07:52

    All the greatest writers put all their emotions into their writing…the rest are too boring to keep me even bothering to keep my eyes on the text. One of my favorite writers is Alexandr Solzhenitzyn–because the emotion is so much there in his writing that it feels like I am talking to him. And that’s in a translation..imagine if you know Russian. I never realized before why I have been so drawn to read all three books in The Gulag Archipelago…and now I know. This is why I have suffered from writer’s block all my life–this is what was right in front of my face along and I didn’t see it. Thanks, Jon!

  149. Michael
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 03:07:46

    I’m studying your work Jon – learning and loving it.

    “It’s the way you make those readers feel…You want them to feel alive.”

    Thanks – Michael

  150. Fazimoon Samad
    Oct 11, 2013 @ 21:44:50

    Love it love it love this post Jon I really enjoyed it so much, and you will always be in my thought and prays and I can never forget a person like you and what you are doing to help us all, thank you Jon.

  151. Stan Eigi
    Jan 12, 2014 @ 07:14:32

    Jon, it’s absolutely amazing! I don’t know how you do this, but everything I read from you is like a radiation of some sorts. It gets to me, no matter how hard I try to shield myself. It really touches me. I honestly try to implement your advices in real life. How can one reject an advice from someone like you?

  152. Louise Lamberth
    Jul 03, 2014 @ 12:31:52

    Great – first time I ever laughed while reading a blog (apart from my own of course 😉 )

  153. Dave Nordella
    Jul 03, 2014 @ 13:06:28

    I can understand why this is Glen Long’s favorite. This one of Jon’s masterpieces. I am glad that it was republished, otherwise I wouldn’t have read it.

  154. Sam
    Jul 03, 2014 @ 17:13:28

    Awakening! Salute your creativity.

  155. Shingirai
    Jul 03, 2014 @ 19:45:16

    Kids often ask,’Daddy, mommy-where did I come from?’
    Wanting the topic to go away, and not knowing how to explain conception to a wide eyed kid, parents reply, ‘we got you from Walmart… from the gifts isle.’
    The kid isn’t bothered. Then the parents mistakenly say, ‘but your name then was Brian, we changed it to Sean.’ Then trouble starts.
    It’s a built-in trait, no one wants their name forgotten and lost. We all want to leave a legacy, it’s the best way to laugh at death, and taste immortality.

    This post in etched in my heart now-thanks Jon and Glen.

  156. Anastacia Hauldridge
    Jul 03, 2014 @ 19:55:03

    This was great it definitely helped me see more clearly now what I must do with the way I been taught how to blog and how to improve my inner voice. I like to thank you for all you do and this was my first time here but now I am going to subscribe.

  157. Beth
    Jul 03, 2014 @ 20:23:15

    “Don’t just write another blog post but set their hair on fire…” love it! Very inspiring post, thanks!

  158. Christian Newman
    Jul 03, 2014 @ 22:27:10

    Ok, Jon, you can out my name in the “all fired up now” column. Great post and I can’t wait to share it!

  159. Carrie
    Jul 04, 2014 @ 00:24:40

    Well done. I am moved! I am inspired! I am crying!
    Thank you. I get it and I won’t let you or my readers down.

  160. QJ
    Jul 04, 2014 @ 03:30:32

    Jon, you’re just a great writer – that’s it. I think while most of us are full of anxiety or worry about how to engage more people, how to move forward, or how to be somebody, you just do what you’re really good at. It’s a great lesson and you are a total role model. Thanks.

  161. Bryan Collins
    Jul 04, 2014 @ 05:30:09

    This reads like your personal manifesto for writing Jon.

    It’s a great read. Did it take long to write?

    • Jon Morrow
      Aug 04, 2014 @ 20:51:33

      It’s been a while, so I don’t recall. Knowing me, probably 10 hours or so.

  162. Denise Read
    Jul 04, 2014 @ 09:11:37

    Truly enjoyed this piece!! Any writer will agree wholeheartedly with you!!

  163. Sadi
    Jul 04, 2014 @ 09:24:47

    Jon, WOW, I love this post. It’s the first thing of yours I’ve read. I will be coming back to it to reread whenever I need a writer pep-talk. Thank you! So spot on and actually useful.

  164. Paul
    Jul 04, 2014 @ 10:03:43

    Beautifully written. You are an inspiration

  165. Joseph Bernard
    Jul 04, 2014 @ 11:26:20

    Awesomely awesome your Awesomeness.
    Thank you Jon, that was very inspirational because it seemed you wrote that for me. I needed a boost because sometime I get discouraged even though I am confident I write posts of real value. Happy 4th, You are greatly appreciated.

  166. Flora Morris Brown
    Jul 04, 2014 @ 12:19:20

    This is my second favorite of Jon’s posts. I was inspired by it the first time it appeared, and am inspired again.

    My favorite is I well up every time I read it.

  167. Geniece Brown
    Jul 04, 2014 @ 12:48:09

    This is awesome. I enjoyed every minute of reading this. I’m thrilled about writing my next blog post this weekend, and I know I have more to share with the world than just what I do for business. I could see you in the hospital room and the people in the restaurant. You certainly made the words come alive on the page. Thanks Jon.

  168. Rebekah Kind
    Jul 04, 2014 @ 13:51:24

    This is an unforgettable piece of writing and you, sir, are unforgettable yourself. Please continue to keep up the great work! You just changed my life.

  169. julie
    Jul 05, 2014 @ 02:08:18

    Very innovative post…..I loved the ‘attention grabber’ feel of your first paragraph ……I think most of us were getting ready to buy flowers.

    When mulling over, being ‘unforgettable’ sometimes all it needs is one comment, or one phrase to cement us in another’s mind, because of the impact it had.


  170. Ivy
    Jul 05, 2014 @ 13:52:42

    Jon, I just love your work, and you are so inspirational! As a writer and new blogger your posts make perfect sense to me and always leave me feeling inspired and motivated. Thank you!!

  171. Gina Ritter
    Jul 05, 2014 @ 21:31:37

    This is not a new topic, but it *is* the first time that *I* felt something when reading about it. Nice work.

  172. Kulwant Nagi
    Jul 07, 2014 @ 01:45:05

    I am speechless after going through this EPIC piece of content.

    We want to touch the world by doing great things.. but only fraction of people actually come out of their comfort zone and dare to do something unforgettable.

    The point where you mentioned about “walking dead” was completely shocking to me. But feeling happy that we can make them alive with our writing and emotions.

    Jon, the biggest reason I read your articles is the EMOTIONS.

    Your articles are so energetic and in a great flow that no one can stop reading once he/she starts.

    Thanks for helping us to create something good in this online world.

  173. Fabienne Raphaël
    Jul 07, 2014 @ 11:45:44

    Hey Jon,

    While I was reading this post, I felt many emotions. I felt shocked, touched, but also really motivated to make a change in people’s lives. I could not get my eyes off the screen and read until the end of it.

    Someone commented that this article is a masterpiece. I agree!

    It makes us realize that we have a tremendous opportunity, as a blogger, to truly connect with people. And if we do that, these people will stay loyal and ask for more.

    P.S. Thanks Glen for this great gift!

  174. Ann
    Jul 10, 2014 @ 14:25:37

    Very powerful words; thank you. I just started following you through Feedly and am really enjoying your blog. I find myself pulling back a little when I write sometimes–and this makes me realize that I need to put myself out there 100%. Again, thank you!

  175. Howard Wand
    Jul 12, 2014 @ 19:38:00

    A very interesting and thought provoking article.. Certainly helpful to all writers. While a blogger might be a greater writer — getting people to the blog is the first order of business and most of us need more help in that department. Thanks for all you do.. Best of success.

  176. Alexander
    Jul 14, 2014 @ 07:18:52

    Well, I do not really care about being remembered when I am dead.

    See, the thing is: Then I will be DEAD.

    No emotions, no bills to pay, no rush to get anywhere. Probably.

    Other than that: Cool post!

  177. Rob Lawrence
    Jul 16, 2014 @ 09:28:45

    “You’re still alive. That means your life has purpose. You were meant for greatness.” – Carmine Gallo.

    Beyond being grateful everyday for waking up, Jon (and Glen), your daily wisdom is an ongoing inspiration.

    In the context of being memorable, what I have learned from you, so far, is our ideas are only as good as the action (in others) that they lead to:

    That is to say, that our ideas are only as good as our ability to communicate them.

    Great communication, I have learned begins with passion. A passion for a subject or purpose and a passion to learn good communication. Including how to write well.

    According to Carmine Gallo (“Talk like TED”) science shows that passion is contagious: “You cannot inspire others unless you are inspired yourself.”

    So lucky to be alive.

    … and to be inspired by such wonderful writing. Cheers both.

  178. Amanda
    Jul 20, 2014 @ 05:12:07

    Thank you, you sparked me along with everyone who read this.

  179. Bill Honnold
    Jul 21, 2014 @ 21:42:23

    I was just cleaning out all of the unread email in my inbox and stumbled upon your post. I was going to press the delete key but instead, I decided to read the article.

    I’m glad that I did.

    I have a bookmark in my browser titled “Great Shit That I’ve Read”. There’s only two posts that I’ve saved.

    Now there’s three.

    • Jon Morrow
      Aug 04, 2014 @ 20:49:02

      I’m honored, Bill. :-)

  180. Harish Bali
    Jul 21, 2014 @ 22:45:25

    hi Jon

    I am on this blog for the first time and i came in through a reference, marking your blog for reference, good work, opportunity to learn i i can clearly see.

  181. Ram Kr Shukla
    Jul 22, 2014 @ 03:14:55

    Hey Jon, It’s a art to burn readers with their desires, very impressive post and clearly reflects your passion and energy.

    • Sany
      Nov 01, 2014 @ 13:46:53

      Fabulous & True !

  182. Javier
    Jul 29, 2014 @ 19:23:52

    Hey Jon,

    This is the kind of writing I want to produce on my blog, not just to write but to make an impact. This is post really opened my mind to be better and do better.

    Thank you!

  183. Demi C
    Aug 03, 2014 @ 05:31:29

    “What really happens, of course, is that you pour your heart and soul into a post, and no one seems to care. No comments, no links, no nothing..”

    Sad but true. I couldn’t express this better myself. You work hard and patiently, pouring your heart and soul into a post, and what do you get? 0 comments, 0 likes, 0 followers. People may see your blog, stay for quite a while, interact with it, and then exit without leaving a trace behind.

    Sometimes I think to myself “Why doesn’t anyone bother to make a comment, even if they have nothing good to say about the blog? You don’t like the content, the design, my writing style, etc? Say so. Give me negative constructive feedback to improve myself and my blog. But please do let me know what’s good or what’s wrong about it. Any feedback is more than welcome.”

    Perhaps you can tell.. I’m a beginner with a 5-week-old blog, which has about 300 pageviews in total but no comments or likes whatsoever. I know that it’s highly likely that my blog sucks because it’s brand-new and I’m an inexperienced blogger.. also due to unforeseen circumstances, I don’t have the time or space to do the things I had in mind. For example, I cannot make new voice recordings or video lessons for the time being, and so I’m quite behind with my blog. Anyway..

    QUESTION: In your post you stressed that bloggers should write in a way that would make the ‘walking dead’ feel alive and awake. Is it even possible in my case?

    My blog is supposed to be an accent reduction course/guide with most posts being pronunciation lessons. Is my blog doomed? Did I choose the wrong niche? I’m a pronunciation enthusiast and when I was trying to come to a decision about the subject of my blog I just couldn’t weed the idea of creating a pronunciation blog and youtube channel out of my head simply because I love reading and talking about English pronunciation so much!

    Any advice or feedback would be more than welcome. Thank you.

    • Jon Morrow
      Aug 04, 2014 @ 20:48:20

      Just from reading your comment, I can tell you’re a good writer, but yes, you chose the wrong niche. You need to go MUCH broader. Also, use self hosted WordPress.

  184. David Gitonga
    Aug 05, 2014 @ 02:32:59

    Hi John,

    I got six words to say to this:


  185. Howard
    Aug 05, 2014 @ 17:50:14

    Hi Jon — as indicated by the many excellent responses, this was a fine stimulating post. It was very helpful. Charlene Christiano had an excellent comment re people in later years….. We look back on all our regrets. Why do that?
    All of us encounter many closed doors. “Would Have”, “Could Have”, ETC. We have to ignore them and look for the door that says: “MY FUTURE.” – Then open it and enter. Nobody ever said it would be easy, but life is ours to live, to error, to forgive, and be whatever we decide to be. It is important to realize and treasure that every day is special, and there will never be another day like today. Tomorrow is just a promise, but today we live for real… Don’t let it slip away. Don’t wait for those final hours when you realize you let it all slip away. Live it fully and help others do the same… Best..

  186. Rich Andoh
    Sep 01, 2014 @ 15:34:44

    Lost for words! Great post…

  187. Amanda
    Sep 05, 2014 @ 05:06:06

    Hello, Jon. I’ve been reading through your posts in blogging and I just want to thank you for all your help both in numbers and in inspiring others.

    I’ve stumbled to this website after visiting a link in Forbes in how to become better in writing blogposts. Needless to say, it was the best that happened in my budding blogging career.

    This post is my favorite because I think it changed me. It never made me under-appreciate writing again. Because for the first time, someone agrees to what I really, really think about writing and more!

    I’ve applied in my posts some of this website’s advice here and there. Thanks for making us laugh while learning something. It makes it more fun.

    As a freelance writer who is in the pursuit of being a Physical Therapist Blog Writer and getting paid for it, I still have a lot to learn but this website has made my journey lighter and a little less lonely.

    Thank you :)

  188. Zahra
    Sep 24, 2014 @ 07:07:22

    I can truly say that this is one of the best posts I have ever read in my life. It’s filled with pure passion and energy that shines through. It’s such a cliche to hear people say that they are dedicating themselves for the betterment of mankind, when in reality you know they are just trying to benefit themselves. But I can tell from your writing that you actually do care…that you are doing it for others. Thanks for waking us up! Hope to read more of your blog soon. Cheers!

  189. shahrkhabar
    Sep 25, 2014 @ 05:56:45

    I love this post. I honestly never thought about experiencing the emotions before writing to get that electricity going. One just has to be careful not to edit the emotion out when chopping down the text in the final blog post edit

  190. Lance Johnson
    Sep 25, 2014 @ 15:44:06

    Since the first time I read this blog during the early summer a month will go by and I’ll read it all over again. This is one of the most inspiring and help blogs I’ve ever read in my 25 years of life. I have a guilty feeling that I need to send you money or something because it’s that much of a gift. Thanks for this!

    Best Regards,
    Lance Johnson

  191. Dimitris Provatas
    Sep 26, 2014 @ 06:05:13

    This post really gave me a wake up call on how to approach my communication with my audience. Need to get to work real fast.

  192. Searra Madsen
    Oct 27, 2014 @ 12:23:02

    This was such an amazing post. I have been struggling, as a young blogger, to connect to my audience and this has been incredibly helpful. You sparked so much passion and emotion in me! Thank you for sharing these helpful tips!!

  193. Stephanie Schlosser
    Nov 01, 2014 @ 13:36:04

    Super post, I’ve read a few of yours now and I’m very impressed.

  194. Amy
    Nov 07, 2014 @ 18:29:07

    Jon, this post is a great perspective on how people are, and how they think. I generally do not like the kind of things that try too hard to pull emotion out of me. I want to feel what I feel, because it is genuine, so I shy away from reading books/articles or watching videos where the big emotional pull is the actual intent, instead of the story itself. So, I don’t want to write things, either, that are not genuinely from my heart, just to pull emotion out of someone so they’ll come back for more. That said, I do think I need to ponder on how to take what is coming from my heart, and learn how to make it resonate with other people in a genuine way. Some writers do that naturally and beautifully, without being over-the-top or insincere. (I absolutely respect that gift/talent!) Thanks again for laying all of this out there.

  195. Johnny
    Nov 17, 2014 @ 01:59:13

    Great stuff as usual my friend!

  196. ecash kenya
    Nov 28, 2014 @ 02:32:21

    That was a hilarious, yet inspiring post Jon, I couldn’t stop smiling as I read it. I have also learned great insight from it. Thanks bro! You are my hero.

  197. Lidiya K
    Dec 05, 2014 @ 20:12:49

    Great post, Jon.
    I loved the intro. Sometimes I also start posts like that – by making the reader become a part of an imaginary situation, no matter positive or negative, and see it through my eyes.
    In the rest of the post you take us on a journey and we don’t finish it before we’ve realized what it really takes to write a great post.

    Let all bloggers keep bringing people back to life and reminding them of their potential and powers :)

  198. Ha
    Dec 16, 2014 @ 00:15:31

    Love your post. Amazing writing.

  199. SAJID
    Dec 23, 2014 @ 08:39:08

    A very interesting and thought provoking article.. Certainly helpful to all writers. While a blogger might be a greater writer — getting people to the blog is the first order of business and most of us need more help in that department. Thanks for all you do.. Best of success.


  200. Mark C.
    Dec 29, 2014 @ 20:01:26

    I’ve read this post several times, but the most significant impact was just now while listening to Hells Bells by AC/DC. Wasn’t by choice. Blame it on Pandora.

  201. Joe Kovacs
    Jan 26, 2015 @ 20:49:38

    Great stuff, Jon, as usual. I think it does pay for us to remember we’re not here to “write blog posts”, we’re here to connect with and inspire others through our writing. We just call that “blogging”. :) What an amazing story, too, about the guy who didn’t commit suicide because of your writing. That’s power beyond pretty much anything I can think of. I consider myself a good writer but the kind of writing/blogging that you’re talking about really will require reaching deep. But you’re right…that’s what people pay attention to and what will make them comment. Thanks for your inspiration. Joe (P.S. “Steven King” should actually be “Stephen King”. ;-))

  202. Laurie
    Feb 01, 2015 @ 14:52:46

    Wow. As they say, when the student is ready the teacher appears. I want to bring my blog to the next level and you seem the perfect person to help me do that. I look forward to learning more.

  203. Catherine Louise
    Feb 06, 2015 @ 20:41:32

    Wow, you must be doing something right – took me an hour to wade through all the comments ( well, seemed like it anyways). I don’t have my own blog yet – seems rather intimidating with all of the existing blogs out there, including this one, but I’ll continue to read your posts and see if I can’t just get over it. 😉

  204. Pleiades Stardust
    Feb 26, 2015 @ 20:17:53

    hello His Royal Awesomeness

  205. Alesya Izoita
    Mar 09, 2015 @ 03:41:20

    Judging by the amount of comments here— your jumper cables worked.
    Well crafted!

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