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How to Become a Writer-Salesman

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"In the light of all this we may draw a few helpful conclusions I think, the first being that no man in whom earnestness and enthusiasm burn need despair of being a good letter writer simply because he lacks a knowledge of the technique of the art, and I think we may as fairly conclude that if we can take this earnest, enthusiastic man and give him a knowledge of the technique of the art his results will triple or quadruple.

Earnestness and Enthusiasm

"Now what, in the last analysis, makes for earnestness and enthusiasm? Simply the consciousness of being enabled to render a fellow-being service. The man with a thing that saves the world time, or labor, or money, is a man working a great economic benefit —he can teach us to do things better, cheaper, faster.

"Bring this man opposite another man—a cynic if you please,—and watch him warm up and tell and demonstrate what he has till he has the other fellow convinced in spite of anything. Why? Because a living, breathing man is before him into whose face and eyes he can look and watch and be stimulated by the effect of his words as mirrored in the other's countenance.

"Take our service man away and place him opposite a typewriter, a blank sheet of writing paper, carbon paper, and an envelope, and watch what happens; his eyes see material where before they saw spiritual things; he is no longer faced with flesh and blood and heart and brain and soul and spirit but with cold, immobile dead things—he is demagnetized.

"But not if he possesses Imagination. Through that precious faculty, 'The eye of the soul,' he still faces a human being, and as he talks to him through writing symbols he can watch his expression change as he brings him through the stages of Attention, Interest, Desire and Action. Imagination has transformed a purely mechanical rule or principle into a thing of pulsing life and he deals again, in the solitude of office or den, with living men and women.

"By that method he must learn to sway a thousand or a hundred thousand minds precisely as he swayed that one—this he must do if he is to spread his message broadcast by means of the mails—this he must do if he wants to achieve in a year what would represent a century of time under other conditions—this he must do, and can do, if within himself he has that rare, fine ethereal quality termed IMAGINATION that,—

'Gathers up
The undiscovered Universe,
Like jewels in a jasper cup.'"

The following is a quotation from a little booklet by Mr. Ruxton entitled "Ten Faults of Untrained Business Writers."

"Some words flash a mental picture to the brain. Some writers have the power of momentarily presenting us with a series of brain-pictures through the words that they use, and, as a consequence, we either like these writers or consider them masters in the art of writing.

Words That Generate Thought

"How forcible are right words."—Bible.

"One of the faults of the untrained writer lies in his use of flat, drab words. Before these the brain of the man at rest sits as a man might sit before the screen of a cinematograph, but, in lieu of witnessing vivid pictures constantly flashed thereon he sees nothing but a dull monotonous series of blurred and uninteresting reels.

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