The one thing all great headlines do…

They only talk about one thing!

Brains are lazy. Too many ideas and they’ll tune you out entirely.

New rule I just made up: You’re writing’s gotta focus ten times harder than you want your reader to focus.

So get relentless about cutting all the “well maybe we should talk about this?” Or the “oh, well it’s important we also mention that?”


As the famous saying goes—kill your darlings. But don’t stop there. Also kill your PMM’s darlings, and Sue from accounting’s darlings.

Not because you’re a bad person and you enjoy watching Sue suffer.

But because you know that whatever she wants to shoehorn into your writing pulls focus away from the one thing it’s trying to say.

The one thing you’re trying to do with your writing at all.

Grab a reader’s attention long enough to put an idea inside their mind.

Headline Rule #4: Focus on one thing, or they’ll read nothing.