Jan 23 2009
In my work for a range of clients, I often have to write various types of communications not only in the voice of that client, but with a degree of detailed technical expertise that one might think would require a minimum of training in that field.
Not so. In my years of “faking it” (and that’s really at bottom what what writing for others comes down to), I’ve learned to follow this proverb that I first heard a long time ago and have probably rendered incorrectly ever since:
“The secret to sounding smart is to imagine what someone much smarter than yourself would say… and then say that.”
It’s fun! And you can do it, too!
In the comments section, please write a paragraph on a topic of which you actually know nothing. Social media, marine biology, politics, coffee-making… whatever you like.
Write your passage in such a way that most people will naturally assume you know what you’re talking about. Except the actual experts. They’ll want to beat you (in which case, perhaps martial arts is a topic you’ll want to stay away from).
I will announce the winner of this contest of “most expert sounding paragraph from a non-expert” at some point in the future. Possibly Monday. Maybe in a month.