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Friday, June 22, 2018

For authors: What the 'Melania Trump's Jacket'-story teaches

Though I have been known to defend Melania Trump on various occasions, the "I really don't care"-jacket did it to me. Wearing this jacket was so inappropriate that, at first, I thought the picture had to be photoshopped.

Needless to say, I am not alone with my thoughts. Everybody from the two women who waited in front of me in the checkout line of a grocery store to most every news reporter in the nation discussed "the jacket," endlessly.

The tenor was the same. In the past, Melania Trump demonstrated that she knows everything about clothing, better than most women. Hence, choosing that jacket could not have been a careless mistake.


Which brings us to what authors can learn from this event.

The job of an author does not include picking the perfect attire every day. If authors feel or believe that they write better content when lounging in their jammies that's what they'll do. And, if a paparazzi took a picture of a bestselling author writing in their jammies (or even in the nude) not one person would say, "Look what he or she wearing. How inappropriate!"

Because everybody understands that's what authors do (and have always done).

In contrast: What if authors write "im-perfect words"?

Relatively recently, an author commented on one of my (free) blogs: "Great post, Gisela. I... (yada-yada)... Keep up the inspiring work."

TRANSLATION: "I want to acquire as much great information as possible  for free. Hence  Offer more (free) stuff."

A much better way to say the same thing could have been:
"Thank you, Gisela. This blog was great. Following you now. Thank you again."

or any number of thoughtful variations.

Stating that others should "keep delivering (free) content" ― IN PUBLIC ― just never looks good.


Of course, this author can write whatever he/she wants but the thoughtless phrasing gives away that the author doesn't weigh his/her words carefully. It also suggests that maybe the writer is a careless writer.

I see this happening ― everywhere. 

The worst example I ever saw was an author commenting (!!) on a book designer's blog that the designer did not "deliver enough free content."

I cringed when I read it though this wasn't even my blog.

Which demonstrates the point:
Whatever we do in public   "others see the message" and draw their conclusions.

While the public will forgive Melania Trump for mispronouncing the one or other word they will scrutinize her attire. And, while dressing carelessly does not reflect on an author's writings, choosing less than ideal words does.


“The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter. ‘tis the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.” ― Mark Twain



Gisela Hausmann is a 29 yr. self-publishing industry veteran, an email evangelist and a top reviewer.  Her work has been featured in regional, national, and international publications 
including Success magazine (print) and Entrepreneur, on Bloomberg, The Innovation Show  a show for Square Pegs in Round Holes, and "The Brutal Truth about Sales & Selling"-podcast

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Gisela tweets @Naked_Determina


Ernest Hemingway in London at Dorchester Hotel 1944
© Unknown or not provided
National Archives and Records Administration  Blue pencil.svg wikidata:Q518155
John F. Kennedy Library (NLJFK), Columbia Point, Boston, MA, 02125-3398.
Record ID
NARA Logo created 2010.svg
Record group: Collection JFK-EHEMC: Ernest Hemingway Collection, 01/01/1880 - 12/31/1999 (National Archives Identifier: 1156 )
Series: Photographs: Europe, 1948-1959, compiled 09/07/1948 - 11/01/1959 (National Archives Identifier: 192671 ) NAIL Control Number: NLK-EHEMC-EUROPE-8I


© 2018 by Gisela Hausmann