Consider this an intervention from a well-meaning friend.

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Photo by Mariano Nocetti on Unsplash

Do you know what’s insane? Your current expectations for yourself.

Now, of course, that statement won’t apply to everyone who reads this — but I’m willing to bet it’ll hit the mark for a good number of you.

Let me ask you a few more questions before you (hopefully) continue reading:

  • How many articles or books about productivity have you read recently?
  • How often do you feel a sense of “not measuring up” as a writer? Who is “measuring up” in comparison?
  • Does your head fill with visions of a great future when you think of how you just need to increase your output to x words/articles/books an hour/day/month? …

Your crash course in seeking reasonable, sustainable results from content in the modern digital age.

lightbulbs representing content strategy ideas
lightbulbs representing content strategy ideas
Photo by Ruthson Zimmerman on Unsplash

Are there any words simultaneously as promising and as vague as Content Strategy? For all that’s been written on this topic, most business owners and executives find themselves uncertain about the specifics of what content strategy is, what it can do, and why it is touted as being such a vital investment for them to make.

There are so many myths about the “power of content” these days, it’s difficult to navigate the topic at all. Many businesses have been burned by their expectations vs. …


A simple guide to writing a male lead your fans will lose their sh** over — every time you publish.

underpants hanging on a clothesline before a heroic blue sky
underpants hanging on a clothesline before a heroic blue sky
Photo by Patrick Kool on Unsplash

I still remember the first time I read a Romance novel that really got me hot and bothered. It was the first book of Nalini Singh’s Guild Hunter series, Angel’s Blood.

Oh, boy. Something about the lethal, decadent archangel hero just did it for me (his name is Raphael, in case you’re wondering). Singh’s other books in the series and spinoffs were just as alluring. All of them were very different, of course, but they shared a certain, shall we say, je ne sais quoi.

That’s French for “I don’t know what.” Which is funny, because as a now-experienced writer arse-deep into her own soon-to-be-launched 7 book Romance series…I actually do know what made those characters so damn sexy. …


Leverage a strong internal content strategy to boost employee retention and adapt to a changing workforce.

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Within five years of this article’s writing, the Millennial generation will represent 75% of the American workforce. They are also the generation that is more than three times as likely to “job-hop” than non-millennials.

According to a recent study by Gallup, Millennials are a generation that is “less engaged in the workplace than are their older counterparts” while simultaneously “behav[ing] as consumers of workplaces, shopping around for the jobs that best align with their needs and life goals.”

This analysis is telling. Add to all this the fact that high Millennial turnover costs the U.S. approximately $30 billion per year. …


Learn from my experiences as a professional writer, author, and platform manager who grew everything from nothing.

writer writing on blank platform page with white background
writer writing on blank platform page with white background
Photo by Neven Krcmarek on Unsplash

As I’ve worked and grown as a writer, I’ve noticed that many of my fellow creators are deeply intimidated by the concept of building and sustaining a platform of their own. Terms like SEO and engagement metrics send most writers running for the hills…but it doesn’t have to be that way.

That’s why I’m putting my experience into this article to demystify the platform-building process. With it, you’ll have the tools and know-how to reach an audience, build relationships with your readers, and get yourself into a mindset that will support your growth for years to come.

So, What Is an Author Platform, Anyway?

There are many ways to define this nebulous concept, but I like the way author and brand expert David Gaughran put it. …


And despite what you’ve heard, this has always been the case — and still is today.

two romantic lovers on edge of a vast mountain landscape
two romantic lovers on edge of a vast mountain landscape
Photo by Ethan Robertson on Unsplash

Love inspires people to do amazing things. The Taj Mahal was built for love, and book after book of timeless poetry was written for it. Romance changes history, topples empires, and fuels many of the best and most lasting stories humans have ever told.

Apparently, books that focus on romance don’t get to enjoy the same high-minded appreciation. According to the so-called literary establishment, literature is not a term that has room for the humble Romance novel.

Terms like “commercial fiction” are used to dismiss the artistic merits of the Romance genre. …


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Photo by Florian Schneider on Unsplash

Standing on the cusp of a brand new chapter, I have a lot to reflect on. Here are the lessons I’ve found most valuable.

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Photo by Willie Fineberg on Unsplash

Opening up the paperwork informing me of my new status as a licensed business owner was somehow both exhilarating and anticlimactic.

On the one hand? Wow. I’m only 24 years old, and I’m already reaching this huge milestone on my path to success as a professional writer and content strategist.

On the other hand… Wow. I have a whole hell of a lot of work to do.

It feels great, though, and I mean that. …


Changing priorities pushed Home Ec. out of American schools. Here’s why it needs to make a comeback — before we lose our most valuable skills.

red wall of mops trying to clean home economics education
red wall of mops trying to clean home economics education
Photo by pan xiaozhen on Unsplash

Americans have a habit of getting ahead of themselves. We think big, dream big, and aim high, often without considering all of the tiny steps it will take to reach our end goals.

Don’t believe me? Look at the media you consume. Take a glance at the headlines populating your newsfeeds. I’ll bet that most of them are bold, declaring stories from the big picture perspective rather than a detailed one.

Perhaps that’s why our systems of education tend to focus on end goals and big ideas, too. The STEM field's ascendancy in our high schools and colleges is an example of this, with its emphasis on industry and innovation above all. …


ADHD presents unique challenges to productivity and focus, but that doesn’t mean you can’t achieve a flow state anyway.

flow state river waterfall in tropical location
flow state river waterfall in tropical location
Photo by Carlos Mitchell on Unsplash

I just finished up three straight hours of writing in my novel manuscript. I also happen to have combination-type ADHD.

I wasn’t hyperfocused — that almost mythical ADHD ‘superpower’ people tout as a blessing in many forums — and I wasn’t reacting to my medication. The three hours I just spent writing resulted from a textbook “flow state” that I’ve finally trained myself to enter at least 8/10 times that I attempt it successfully.

Much has been written about the flow state on Medium and beyond, so I won’t waste time (or precious attention) on explaining it. I’ll leave you with a very basic definition in case you need some context, provided by the psychologist who named the concept (Mihály…


Did I stereotypically forget to order a refill of my Vyvanse? Yes. Did it teach me a few important life lessons? Also yes!

ADHD birds flying in a chaotic cloud
ADHD birds flying in a chaotic cloud
Photo by JJ Shev on Unsplash

Look, if there’s one thing that perfectly encapsulates the spirit of ADHD, it’s me forgetting (read: procrastinating) to order my ADHD medication refill to the point that I had to go about two weeks without it.

I’ve been on regular stimulant medication for over a year now. That isn’t very long in the grand scheme of things, but WOW, did it make a difference. I just didn’t realize it had until my medication was taken away for a while.

As it turns out, this wasn’t really a bad thing. It brought me some insight I had no idea I needed. It gave me a big dose of optimism. And it also reminded me that I was functioning at an okay level before I ever touched one of those orange-and-white pills, and I could do so again. …

About

Emily Sinclair Montague

Emily Sinclair Montague is a professional writer, author, and content strategist. Connect with her at www.wordsofafeather.net or on Twitter (@EmilytheMontag1)!

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