Who's the most important person in your business?

Who’s the Most Important Person in Your Business?

“Hello Mr Rose, nice to see you again.” The head waitress (I’m pretty sure her name badge said Christine) stood there, a big friendly smile on her face. I’d just walked into the restaurant for breakfast, still half asleep. “Oh, hi. Yeah, thank you.” She smiled. “I thought I noticed your name on the list. Do you want me to bring you a coffee over?” I vaguely recognised her, she’d been on shift when I’d visited before. But had she actually recognised me? I’d stayed at that particular Premier Inn (other budget hotel chains are available) about five times previously. Over five years. Out of precisely 1,826 days, Christine had seen me for approximately 100 minutes. On most of those …

Pain & Gain, Chapter Seven

If you need to catch up on the story so far, check out the earlier chapters HERE. “So you recognise him then?” Freya was smirking, her eyes mocking Eddie. Taking a step back, Eddie held his hands up in the air, imploring the gods for patience. “Just please, cut it out. You win, I’ve signed your stupid confidentiality agreement, I’m working for you. Well done, let’s have a big round of applause.” He moved back to the table and took a seat. He took a deep breath, his next words spoken with exaggerated calmness. “What are you doing with a photograph of David Stone?” Freya looked at him for a moment, her head tilted to the side. The whirring cogs …

How to Wreck Your Knees in 24,875 Steps

It was around five years ago. The sun had only just come up, but I’d been awake for hours; I don’t tend to sleep all that well in a tent (who does?), and I’d lost count of the number of people who’d walked past. We were at the base of Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales, and this was my first time walking it. My friend, Dave, tapped on the tent flap (have you ever tried tapping on a tent flap? It’s harder than you’d think), letting me know it was time to get started. After a brief sojourn to the local pub, we’d arrived at the car park in the pitch black, and we’d set up my tent on the one patch of …

Pain & Gain, Chapter Six. A thriller with a sci-fi edge.

Pain & Gain, Chapter Six

If you need to catch up on the story so far, check out the earlier chapters HERE Ten hours had passed since David had emerged at dawn, blinking like a newborn into the streets of London. The earlier promise of light had been broken, and the rain had hung up its jacket and made itself at home. David barely noticed. He had walked non-stop, ignoring the blisters from the tight shoes and focusing on putting as much distance between the Underground and himself. He kept his head down, doing his best to avoid the people that infested the city. That had proved impossible. David had been as surprised as anyone when people started showing symptoms so soon, during his escape …

The Batman vs. Superman Guide to Freelance Blogging

The Batman vs. Superman Guide to Freelance Blogging

This post was originally published by the brilliant Be a Freelance Blogger. Check out the site for all the freelance blogging resources you’ll ever need Your secret’s out. You’re a superhero, flying through the sites and blogs of the internet, saving readers from bland writing and boring content. Maybe you even wear your underwear on the outside of your pants. Either way, I salute you. However, with great blogging comes great responsibility, and the journey can be tough. Fortunately, Batman and Superman have some great advice for those looking to fly high as freelance bloggers. How to blog like Batman Bat-tip #1: Remember your mask Batman’s mask makes him more than just a man. It helps him strike fear into the …

Pain & Gain, Chapter Five

Pain & Gain, Chapter Five

If you want a refresher, check out the earlier chapters HERE Seven Years Earlier The light was creeping through the windows, just enough for Eddie to see his breath form in the frozen air. He barely felt the cold, just a dull ache in his chest and arms as he forced out another push-up, then another. The dull ache turned to fire as he continued, making him grimace. He managed one more before collapsing onto the threadbare carpet, five reps short of his standard. He figured a covert insertion via a HALO jump followed up with three hours sleep must have had an effect. Either that or the bacon cheese burgers were finally catching up with him, and he was …

Storytelling for Businesses, Part 2 - Your Homepage

Story Telling for Businesses, Part 2 – Your Home Page

This is the second part in the series. To read Part 1 and learn how adverts tell effective stories, click here. While it can be fun to see how big businesses use adverts to tell stories, it’s not amazingly helpful for your average business owner. How many of us have got the cash to burn producing an advert for our business? For most of us it’s never going to happen. However, virtually every business can afford to set up a website, a platform with the potential to reach around the globe. What’s the best way to use this opportunity? To tell stories of course. Recap time from part 1: Stories are all sorts of crazy awesome, and grab readers much more …

Futuristic Thriller, Pain & Gain, Chapter 4

Pain & Gain, Chapter Four

Catch up with the start of the story HERE The rain was horizontal that day, dancing across the sky and streets in slabs. Eddie stepped out of the taxi and yet again found himself soaked to the skin. It wasn’t the worst start to a job interview he’d ever had, but it was hardly the good omen he was looking for. The clouds had brought darkness to London ahead of schedule, and it was almost a relief to look at the Salve Ltd building. Spotlights at the base illuminated the building, racing up the walls before hitting the sky. The building was a beacon, standing proud amidst the dull grey of the city. Eddie looked up for a moment, taking …

Storytelling for businesses, Part 1 - Adverts

Storytelling for Businesses, Part 1 – Adverts

Storytelling seems to have become a buzzword in marketing today, but people have long understood the power of stories to sell. This is especially evident in the advertisements that bombard your television.  Back in the 70’s, Cadbury’s introduced the Smash Martians and their story. Today, Freeview’s advert tells an epic tale right out of 1984 (Because of course, the first thing that comes to mind when I think of subscription TV is a fascist dictatorship, right?). But why exaclty are advertisers so enamoured with story? The Strength of Stories There’s no doubt that stories are immensely powerful and popular. Children around the world are told fairytales before they can even speak. We spend our free time reading, watching and listening …

Pain & Gain, Chapter 3 of the story

Pain & Gain, Chapter Three

Catch up with the first chapters HERE The knock, although quiet, still disturbed the darkness. Red lines rippled across the black, scraping against Eddie’s consciousness as the knock echoed. Eddie tried to ignore it, to retreat to the shadows, but it refused to go away. Instead it grew louder, more insistent, demanding his attention. Eddie turned over, waking up enough to find the nearest cushion and smother himself with it. For a moment the knocking faded away and the Bliss welcomed him back into it’s warm embrace. Eddie could feel his soul smile when the door flew open and footsteps marched their way toward him, coming to a stop at his side. He risked opening one eye halfway, trying to …