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I guess I have strange reading habits since I follow media writers that most people don’t know anything about.
Here are my top 4 favorite unknown media writers:
- Frank Deford writes about sports in Sports Illustrated;
- Peggy Noonan writes politics in Wall Street Journal;
- Warren Brown reviews automobiles at Washington Post; and
- Rex Reed whips up film reviews like it’s nobody’s business at New York Observer.
And today I’d like to introduce a fifth one to my Unknown Bards Hall of Fame:
Copy Writer Matt Furey.
You’ll never read a word from Matt unless you’re subscribed to his free e-mail letters because Matt does not write for any publication. He is a direct marketer who sells exercise programs and healthy nutrition and boy can he write! Both in terms of quantity and quality I think he has established a difficult standard to match.
While direct marketers are discussing whether one email a week is too much, Matt sometimes sends TWO emails a DAY and I read both with great delight.
Not that I buy any books or videos from him. I haven’t bought any up until now. But his copy is so hypnotizing, so personal, so warm, so unrehearsed and immediate that you can’t help but carried away with the powerful tide of his fast prose.
Here are some short excerpts from his emails:
“A Shaolin Story & 50% Off Special
I’m leaving Hainan Island tomorrow to visit two more sacred
mountains in China. One of them is Wu Tai Shan – the other Song
Shan – the site of the world renowned Shaolin Temple.
I’ve been to the Shaolin Temple before but had a snafu with the
photos last time – as well as the idiot tour guide who was hired
without my knowledge or consent.
Typically I don’t like or want tour guides – and this guy four
years ago helped fuel my non-desire for any additional guides.
Let me give you the fireworks on this story…”
“I Talked to Buddha
Naturally, you may think I’m nuts when you read today’s headline.
Then again, maybe I’m not.
Further investigation may reveal the true answer.
I encourage you to check things out for yourself by going to [his
web page URL]
A surprising near-death photo may surprise you…”
Sometimes he gets personal and pulls it off really from, straight from the heart:
“A Personal Message from Matt Furey
My Father Taught Me
When I reflect upon my childhood, my fondest memories of my father
are… [a list of childhood memories follows]…
I treasure all these moments in time – but there is one memory of
my father that stands out above all others. Twas when he and I
played catch with a baseball in my front yard. My father wasn’t a
great athlete. He weighed 119 pounds when he graduated high school.
He was also a lefty (and so are both of my kids). He spent the
majority of his daytime hours reading and studying – and still
does. So it was a BIG deal for him to stop reading and play catch
with me. Even for a few minutes. Isn’t it funny how that memory
stands above all the others? It shows how delicate and precious
each moment in time really is. It also shows how an exchange of
energy – expressed through the tossing of a baseball – makes
everything else in life seem trivial…”
He sometimes signs off with virile head-banger humor that makes me laugh aloud:
“Kick ass – take names,
What’s Matt’s lesson? It is this:
TELL STORIES to establish a RELATIONSHIP with your readers, whether you’re trying to sell something or get someone’s attention.
Matt Furey is an excellent story teller in the mold of those great story-tellers of a bygone era. He really knows how to spin a yarn. That’s the plain secret of his success as a top marketer as well.
Write with fury like Furey to tell a good story and you’ll have readers who’ll follow you to the end of the world.
Remember: we are writers ONLY on the days that we actually write.