David Deutsch's "I wish I had read 10 books 10x instead of 100 books"

17 replies
Have you ever heard him say that?

I keep hearing it in different places.

Seems like a pretty good idea.

I just realized I haven't read through any of the classics in full in at least a couple years.

What do you think?

Do you think it's better to reread the 10 "best" books 10x or read 100?
#david #deutsch
  • Profile picture of the author ThomasOMalley
    Read the classic books again with a few new resources you find during the year.

    For example, I read Caples' book, How to Make Your Advertising Make Money twice a year.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7531868].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author hhhusted
      Originally Posted by ThomasOMalley View Post

      Read the classic books again with a few new resources you find during the year.

      For example, I read Caples' book, How to Make Your Advertising Make Money twice a year.
      I read that book to. In fact, I believe I still have it somewhere in my office.
      Signature

      -----------------------------------------------------------
      Harry Husted
      http://www.creatingwords.com
      With 20+ years’ experience, I can help YOU stop struggling to stand out, with a more dynamic marketing message, SEO, an attention-getting e-book, or a catchy jingle of your own to reel in those prospects.

      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7535559].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author max5ty
    Your post is very timely.

    Like a sign from the copywriting gods.

    Just a couple months ago I decided to go through all the books I had (including ebooks), and throw out all the useless crap. I decided I'd only keep a few that I deemed important. Almost all those turned out to be classics. There were still a few I kept that were what I'd consider modern, although not many.

    My criteria...

    If the book was simply rehashed stuff, which lots are, they had to go. Also, if it was written by someone who had only sold info on how to sell info, I'd can it...clunk, into the trash it went.

    It had to be written by someone who actually had some real life experience in working for real life companies. Tough criteria I know, but learning from someone that's been in the trenches is usually invaluable.

    A lot of books, and most ebooks on the subject of copywriting are just taken from the classics and told in another way. Mostly by marketers.

    What usually happens, a person reads a book, gets excited...then does nothing.

    They move on looking for the next "miracle" book. Read it, and then do nothing.

    Before they know it, they have a whole pile of books, and a whole lot of doing nothing.

    It can all confuse a person. It can have your head spinning. It leads to information overload, a serious medical condition some copywriters are inflicted with.

    One of the side effects of information overload is that it paralyzes their creative abilities.

    I'd suggest everyone set their own strict guidelines and protect their mind from becoming polluted with gobbledygook.

    Although I'd never heard David Deutsch say this, I agree.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7532228].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Rezbi
    It's what works for David Deutsch.

    Personally, I prefer to read many books and do many courses. My reason is that sometimes - okay, a lot times - I just don't get what I see in one place.

    But when I see the same thing described elsewhere, another way, I get it.

    Maybe I'm just plain stupid.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7532338].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author wrcato2
      I read the classics every year. Just finished Schwabs short course in copy writing. Getting ready to read tested advertising methods, and after that I'll read fellow Missourians Robert Collier letter book.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7532382].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author DavidG
      Originally Posted by Rezbi View Post

      It's what works for David Deutsch.

      Personally, I prefer to read many books and do many courses. My reason is that sometimes - okay, a lot times - I just don't get what I see in one place.

      But when I see the same thing described elsewhere, another way, I get it.

      Maybe I'm just plain stupid.
      That makes 2 of us.

      I have desktop copy coach and was confused on Clayton's take on Benefits... I ended up downloading and reading EVERYTHING he wrote just to "get it"...

      Only until I purchased his 2006 Seminar was I able to understand his take on benefits.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7532467].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author MikeHumphreys
      Originally Posted by Rezbi View Post

      It's what works for David Deutsch.

      Personally, I prefer to read many books and do many courses. My reason is that sometimes - okay, a lot times - I just don't get what I see in one place.

      But when I see the same thing described elsewhere, another way, I get it.

      Maybe I'm just plain stupid.
      I agree with Rezbi. I do better to completely master a concept when I hear it from multiple sources that are able to present the idea from their own educated point of view and their own "in the trenches" experience.

      Here's a good example: The first few times I studied John Carlton's methods for bullet writing, I didn't completely get it. It wasn't due to anything missing or lacking in Carlton's teachings... I just wasn't getting it 100% but couldn't completely figure out why.

      But once I read Tony Flores' explanation (in one of Clayton Makepeace's products) for the Carlton technique, then the last missing piece fell into place.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7541001].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author JasonParker
        Originally Posted by MikeHumphreys View Post

        I agree with Rezbi. I do better to completely master a concept when I hear it from multiple sources that are able to present the idea from their own educated point of view and their own "in the trenches" experience.

        Here's a good example: The first few times I studied John Carlton's methods for bullet writing, I didn't completely get it. It wasn't due to anything missing or lacking in Carlton's teachings... I just wasn't getting it 100% but couldn't completely figure out why.

        But once I read Tony Flores' explanation (in one of Clayton Makepeace's products) for the Carlton technique, then the last missing piece fell into place.
        Oh man, John Carlton's bullet formula is the best...

        I've learned that way too, by studying a million different things.

        But I also know that people retain about 10% of what they read.

        I think that's why David D said that.

        Because if you read a book 10x then you should, in theory, retain the whole thing.

        And if that book happens to have 90% of what really matters in it, then I think it's a good idea to focus on that book until you've absorbed it all.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7541220].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author JasonParker
    Just rearranged my book case and selected 10 books to only focus on for the first quarter of 2013. (10 selected books plus swipe files went on top shelf). We'll see if just sticking to 10 books in more beneficial.

    -My Life In Advertising/Scientific Advertising, Claude Hopkins
    -Confessions of an Advertising Man, Ogilvy
    -Ogilvy On Advertising
    -How To Make Your Advertising Make Money, Caples
    -Robert Collier Letter Book
    -Tested Advertising Methods 4th Edition, Caples
    -Billion Dollar Marketing Secrets, Ted Nicholas
    -Breakthrough Advertising, Eugene Schwartz
    -The Secret of Selling Anything, Harry Browne
    -Making Ads Pay, Caples
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7533621].message }}
  • I agree, stick with the top writers. Or else you may suffer from, as Max said, the copywriters nightmare...

    "Information overload" - when there are 5 possible Big Ideas and Themes there suddenly becomes 177.

    But, as David mentioned you sometimes have to read everything an A - lister has published to get a complete understanding of it.

    One book you have to read at least 3 times to get a proper grasp of it is - "Breakthrough Advertising"

    Eugene didn't exactly write it to flow like one of his Ads.


    Steve
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7533895].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author hhhusted
    Originally Posted by JasonParker View Post

    Have you ever heard him say that?

    I keep hearing it in different places.

    Seems like a pretty good idea.

    I just realized I haven't read through any of the classics in full in at least a couple years.

    What do you think?

    Do you think it's better to reread the 10 "best" books 10x or read 100?
    Frankly, when I read a book, I give it to someone or take it to the library as a donation, unless the book is so valuable that I keep it, so as to refer to it now and then.

    I love reading how-to books. I love learning how to fix new things. I am intrigued by how things work. I also read books on the writing craft, screenwriting, and English. I also love science and math. I read books on Quantum Physics and Quantum Mechanics. I studied this subject in college at one point. Very interesting stuff.
    Signature

    -----------------------------------------------------------
    Harry Husted
    http://www.creatingwords.com
    With 20+ years’ experience, I can help YOU stop struggling to stand out, with a more dynamic marketing message, SEO, an attention-getting e-book, or a catchy jingle of your own to reel in those prospects.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7535553].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author hhhusted
    Has anyone read any books by Bob Bly? I read a few of them? He is an excellent writer and marketer. He knows his stuff.
    Signature

    -----------------------------------------------------------
    Harry Husted
    http://www.creatingwords.com
    With 20+ years’ experience, I can help YOU stop struggling to stand out, with a more dynamic marketing message, SEO, an attention-getting e-book, or a catchy jingle of your own to reel in those prospects.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7535566].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
      Originally Posted by hhhusted View Post

      Has anyone read any books by Bob Bly? I read a few of them? He is an excellent writer and marketer. He knows his stuff.
      I read The Copywriter's Handbook. Thought it was pretty good. Since I only write my own copy, take my opinion with a grain of salt.
      Signature

      Just when you think you've got it all figured out, someone changes the rules.

      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7536671].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author ARSuarez
        This is something Gary Bencivenga has said, too.

        If it means anything, I'm currently re-reading all the classics going into 2013. I am learning more re-reading these old books - which I've already gone through a number of times - than from all the 'hot' new books I've read this year.

        Most of these guys are just repeating what the Masters said. Problem is, they have less understanding of WHY those principles worked.

        My two cents.

        Angel
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7539233].message }}
  • I've posted it before.

    But here it is again - Team Makepeaces Bullet Formulas.


    Steve


    P.S. So that nobody frets it was given as a free gift a couple of years ago on Clayton's Total Package.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7541208].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author hhhusted
    Everyone has a method. I prefer to read one book from an expert instead of reading several books. People have their preferences.
    Signature

    -----------------------------------------------------------
    Harry Husted
    http://www.creatingwords.com
    With 20+ years’ experience, I can help YOU stop struggling to stand out, with a more dynamic marketing message, SEO, an attention-getting e-book, or a catchy jingle of your own to reel in those prospects.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7541498].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
      I think there is great value in rereading books by masters (especially books on copywriting..

      I've got a library of marketing, advertising, selling books that number about 2,000. And I've read 99% of them. But most I give a quick read through and that's it. We all know the great ones. Those I reread over and over again.

      Carlton, Caples, Benson, Hopkins, Schwartz, the same as the rest of you.

      I have a few sets of John Carlton DVDs that I watch about once a year. I get something out of them every time.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7545962].message }}

Trending Topics