still life painting

Some Treasured Wisdom on Writing

Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts.

– Wiliam Strunk, The Elements of Style; 4th Edition, Allyn and Bacon; Needham Heights, MA; 2000

The great memos are written and rewritten, shared with colleagues who are asked to improve the work, set aside for a couple of days, and then edited again with a fresh mind.

– Jeff  Bezos as quoted in

When writing Berkshire Hathaway’s annual report, I pretend I am talking to my sisters.  I have no trouble picturing them: Though highly intelligent, they are not experts in accounting or finance.  They will understand plain English, but jargon may puzzle them.  My goal is simply to give them the information I would wish them to supply me if our positions were reversed.  To succeed, I don’t need to be Shakespeare; I must, though, have a sincere desire to inform.

– Warren Buffet, as quoted by Bryan A. Garner in HBR Guide to Better Business Writing, page 9; Harvard Business Review Press; Boston, MA; 2012

Writing and Editing Services

I’ll meet with you or your group—in person or on-line—to offer help with any writing project at any stage of its development—from an outline and rough draft to editing and proofreading. I  also conduct workshops for small groups with a focus on the key issues facing any writer:

✓Clarifying our purpose or goal
✓ Identifying and understanding our readers’ needs and interests
✓ Capturing our readers’ attention and interest from the get-go
✓ Getting to the point
✓ Organizing material for clarity and coherence
✓ Finding the right words–adopting the right tone or style
✓ Giving sentences a nice rhythm
✓ Creating a reader-friendly format
✓ Getting the grammar and punctuation right

Some of My Favorite Books on Writing—Instructive and Entertaining

  • Appleman, Jack E.; 10 Steps to Successful Business Writing; Second Edition; ASTD Press; 2017
  • Bernoff, Josh; Writing without Bullshit; Harper Collins; New York, 2016
  • Evans, Harold; Do I Make Myself Clear?; Little Brown and Co.; New York; 2017
  • Garner, Bryan; Better Business Writing; HBR; Boston, MA; 2012
  • Strunk, William and White, E.B.; The Elements of Style; 4th Edition; Allyn and Bacon; Needham Heights, MA; 2000 (A short, highly readable and entertaining classic!)
  • Zinsser, William; On Writing Well; Harper Collins; NY; 2006 or later

Some Testimonials

My website was created 20 plus years ago, and it needed an update….desperately.

Paul was able to capture the tone, style, and a nuanced understanding of key aspects of my business and convert that understanding into engaging, easy to read content. I was thrilled.

Ross Honig, Principal

Honig and Associates, Turn-around Consultants, Boston, MA

As a first time audio book narrator, I was looking for a coach who could partner with me to turn a business book into an audio experience. Whether reviewing word choice, varying sentence structure, or creating transitions, Paul’s writer’s eye was just what was needed.

In addition to providing a fresh perspective on the content, Paul shared tips and tools that added that all important conversational tone to the material. I continue to use some of those practices today.

Trisha Griffin-Carty

Storyfinder, Speaker, Presentation Coach