When I was 11 our family moved from the suburbs to a 100-year-old farmhouse in rural northeastern Ohio.
Since I was homeschooled and living a solid 30 minutes from civilization, I got into some pretty weird hobbies.
This one year in late winter, I saw some sap oozing from a maple tree in our backyard, and I decided it would be fun to try to make my own maple syrup.
I rooted around until I found a plant with woody, hollow branches, and I carved myself a few little “spouts.”
Then I grabbed the hand-cranked drill my grandfather had given me and bored a few holes in the maple tree and shoved in my makeshift spigots.
The sap would run into little plastic cups that I set on the ground, and every day I’d collect a pint or so and take it back to the house.
If you’re part of the 99.99% of the population that hasn’t tried to make your own maple syrup, the recipe is pretty simple:
Sap + Heat + Time
I remember tasting the raw sap—it’s not very sweet at all. It tastes vaguely like flat 7 Up that’s been watered down.
So making syrup means you start with a TON of sap (as much as 85 gallons to make 1 gallon of syrup)…
And boil and boil and condense and condense until the water escapes and you’re left with the dark, golden, sugary sweetness.
Writing good emails and sales pages is a condensing process too.
What makes for interesting and persuasive writing is DETAIL and SPECIFICS.
Really good copy is “information dense.”
There’s not a lot of hype and empty fluff—instead every word is thick with meaning.
The raw material for good writing is *research*.
A big mistake a lot of people make in their writing is, they don’t start with enough “sap.”
When I’m working a new email course or sales page, I’ll start by studying the product I’ll be selling from every angle, and researching the stories of people who have the problem it solves.
I take a LOT of notes—ideally I want to have 5-10X more ideas and stories than I’ll have space to use.
When you have this much raw material to “boil down,” writer’s block is a non-issue.
And the emails you write are so “sticky” that your subscribers can’t help but keep reading (and buying).