So as you probably know my book is out and hooray whatever.
1) Writing a book - even if you're self-publishing - isn't free (if you want to do it right)
While many people have said "hey, self publishing is free, go ahead!" the truth is that yes, you can write and publish a book for free. But if you want to do it right, you'll need an Editor, a proofreader, someone to design and format it (because just uploading a PDF to createspace is bad) and probabyl a cover designer. People do judge a book by its cover. They don't care if it's good, but they'll really care if it's bad.
2) You really need an editor.
The original first draft of This Is How You Pitch was 70,000 words long. And let me tell you it was fucking abominable. I mean really, it was awful. I had to work with an editor - the amazing Nils Parker of Command-Z Content - to get it into a better state (about 25,000 words less). You also need a really thick skin if you want to work with a great editor, because they're the ones that will stop you embarrassing yourself with awful crap.
3) PR People Live In A Magical Dreamworld Of Unreality
Reading PRNewser's response to my Forbes article - which was relatively tame compared to how I've been on this stupid blog - was hilarious. Here's the first line:
In case you—like most people—missed it, last week Forbes ran yet another inflammatory story about how much journalists can’t stand public relations people. We know, we know. Ugh
If you actually read the piece, Karsten didn't say he couldn't stand PR people. In fact, I'm the one who said that. Me. I hated on PR people, I tore them apart. But of course, as an industry of martyrs and self-deluders, we can't possibly just sit there and say "hey, shit, we need to get better." No, we have to actively snarl and snap at reporters who dare point out legitimate issues.
This one (surprise!) was a bit of a pitch for interviewee and reporter-turned “PR maverick” Ed Zitron‘s new endeavor EZ-PR, with which he plans to break all the rules of traditional media relations and revolutionize the industry. Or something.
Dude, come on. I never said I'd revolutionize anything, and my endeavour is anything but new.
The rest of the article isn't so bad, but stinks of "uhhh this is obvious" butthurtitude, where they're confused and annoyed that I got press for my tactics or book or whatever, and that nobody in PR does this and oh god please stop hurting us!
- No cold calls. Zitron writes in his e-book that phone calls are “today’s version of the door-to-door salesman”, which is fairly accurate. Yet we feel like the industry already got that message, because we very rarely get cold calls. Do your managers pressure you to make cold calls? (Serious question. We don’t know.)
DO YOU EVEN READ TWITTER. DO YOU EVEN TALK TO REPORTERS. HAVE YOU EVER SPOKEN TO ONE. THIS HAPPENS ALL THE TIME EVERY DAY EVERY NIGHT EVERY FUCKING MOMENT. IT STILL HAPPENS. STOP PRETENDING OUR INDUSTRY IS GOOD. IT IS BAD. WHY DO YOU KEEP PRETENDING IT IS GOOD.
Really, seriously, the reason I wrote this book is because on the whole our industry is still being taught in the wrong way and I thought hey, maybe someone will read it and do a bit better. But no, please, tear down this Forbes article and make fun of it and continue pretending like we're all these amazing 'story tellers'.
I should say: Patrick is a good writer, I don't hate on Patrick.
In conclusion, this comment:
So to sum things up, Ed Zitron pitched Karsten Strauss at Forbes on why he is sooooo special and does PR differently. The sweet irony of a hypocritical hack journalist covering a cannibalistic PR flack. You certainly took the bait Karsten, now it's up to sites like this one to keep running the same old news story over and over again. Don't worry journalists, we don't really like you either. But you need our ideas and sources and we need you to cover our clients. You don't like bad email pitches and cold calls. Blah blah blah. Nothing new here....
This right here is the men's rights movement of PR - and the dark truth that some PR people truly believe: that the reporters desperately need them.
Here is the horrible truth: If 99% of PR people stopped working tomorrow, a few reporters might be annoyed, but a week or two later nobody would care.
Alright that's it bye.