7 Reasons Why Articles Comprised Exclusively of Brief Numbered Sections are Awesome

“If I had more time, I would write something shorter.”

Paraphrase of Blaise Pascal, and similar quotes from Goethe, Balzac, and others

Information governance is complicated. It may even be complex. Every day I strive to simplify its challenges for my clients – without making them simplistic. Also, as a writer, I understand that there is a overwhelming amount of content for people to digest – even in the narrow universe of information governance. In response, many trade publications have seemingly become little more than slide shows and glorified top ten lists.

Look, I get it. How can long-form publications compete with the constant stream of glib, ironic, self-promoting 140 character missives (BTW, you can see mine at @btblair) that point people to networks where the range of your critical response is limited to a “Like” button?

Where is the deep thinking, reflection, contemplation, and true insight being done and communicated? We won’t solve information governance without it. If we don’t have time to communicate, digest, and think about information governance and its complexity in a real way, we don’t have time to fix it.

As you have probably already guessed (if you haven’t already disappeared back down the Twitter rabbit-hole upon seeing the frightening chunk of uninterrupted print I’m presenting) this blog post’s title is a little sardonic (maybe even sarcastic) – as is the following list:

7 Reasons Why Articles Comprised Exclusively of Brief Numbered Sections are Awesome

  1. Writers don’t actually have to invent an interesting narrative structure or even allow the topic itself to dictate a structure that would best fit the content.
  2. I can get the self-satisfied feeling of keeping up with the latest thinking in my industry without actually having to read anything other than 7 bold-faced phrases. None of those tiresome paragraphs to worry about.
  3. I don’t have to be concerned about whether or not there are more than 7 Important Things to know about a topic.
  4. I don’t have to be concerned about whether or not there are less than 7 Important Things to Know about a topic.
  5. The elegant concision of the structure helps to make me feel that the content must be distilled into just the really insightful parts.
  6. Ibid.
  7. Yay, I made it to Seven!

Disclaimer. A few years ago I wrote a book that used a list of 7 as its structure. Last year I wrote an eBook that used a list of 10. I’ve written a guest blog post with 8 Things. Just a few weeks ago, I wrote a blog post using this structure. And yes, I am about to Tweet about this blog post.

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