Some weeks, I write 1,000 words. Other weeks I write up to 10,000 words. I’m not counting email. The word meter would explode if I counted those words. I don’t love to write, I don’t hate to write. I just do. One thing I know about writing. Writing forces me to think clearly.
That last comments bears repeating again.
Writing forces me to think clearly.
But I HATE to Write
Remember when you procrastinated when starting a seemingly meaningless term paper project back in school? Writing scared the bejesus out of you, right?
But that was then. You’re a financial leader now.
I’m not suggesting you need to be a book author, blogger, or some other prolific writer. I am recommending that you start writing in order to think more clearly about:
- what you have done
- what you are doing,
- and what you will be doing
I don’t understand the science behind the act. Writing crystallizes our thinking process. Sometimes, writing causes us to rethink a wrong or an improper decision. That leads to action.
And that’s why we should write. That’s also writing for yourself.
But how about writing for others? You are in the persuasion business. You’re a marketer and a salesperson, not just a CFO, controller, or FP&A professional. You have to learn to write if you want to grow as a business professional.
Don’t worry, I won’t leaving you hanging. I have some book suggestions.
My 5 Favorite Books on Writing
I used to write for a living. I wrote under an hourly deadline which was stressful and caused me to hate the writing process for several years.
I’ve since discovered the following books, and they have brought back the
Here’s my fav 5:
- On Writing by Stephen King is part memoir, part educational. Never read a King book? Doesn’t matter. It’s rock solid. I’ve now read it 4 times.
- If You Want to Write: A Book About Art, Independence and Spirit
isby Brenda Ueland. I had never heard of it until Guy Kawasaki mention it multiple times about it being his favorite book.
- Writing Tools by Roy Peter Clark is right now my top pick. Want to know how to read this book? Just read one chapter a day. Not two or three. Only one. No cheating.
- Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content by Ann Handley is funny and witty. It’s the only book on writing I recommend to CEOs who are serious about growing as a leader.
- On Writing Well by Zinsser is considered a classic in this domain space. If you read the first four, the Zinsser content will be familiar. Still, I like the book.
My honorable mention is a book I was required to purchase my sophomore year for a journalism course – Strunk and White’s, The Elements of Style. If you want to buy it, get the physical book and keep it at your desk for handy reference.