In this ~1 hour video David Perell explains his method for writing.

How to Write Online Workshop

The Capture Habit

You need a note-taking system for generating better ideas.

What ideas should you save?


  • personal
  • inspiring
  • easily lost (losable)
  • effective (useful)

Sources: ebooks, online articles – use a service like readwise.

Capture your ideas while you read.

Capture things while they are fresh.


Modern writing isn’t created. It’s assembled.

You have to cull your writing from vast amounts of notes.

Writing can be a collaborate progress. Ask for feedback.

The Content Triangle

the content triangle image from Bronson Chang's notes

conversations -> share -> feedback -> create content -> distribute

2-minute-drill: explain your idea in 2 minutes or less by talking. Humans are better at talking than reading. After that, you can distill the audio to write your article.

You don’t need to be 100% original.

Improve Your Writing

CLEAR sentences:

  • Create a rhythm
  • Link your sentences
  • Eliminate anything that’s confusing
  • Add colorful details
  • Remove unnecessary words

Don’t just write words. Write music.

Sweet spot: words people know, but don’t say.

words to use image from Bronson Chang's notes

Telling a Story

Roller-Coaster: start with a setup (tension rises), conflict, resolution.

roller-coaster storytelling image from Bronson Chang's notes

Learn to Write FAST

FAST Writing: write first, research second. Write in the course of your life.

  • Find
  • Assemble
  • Speak
  • Teach

Use your note-taking system, structure ideas by talking, record yourself, set a timer.


Grow your audience on public platforms. Build relationships on private ones.

  1. Create value on public platforms.
  2. Send audience to private platforms.
  3. store value with your email list.

Build a Personal Monopoly

Define your personal monopoly:

  • specific (the more narrow the niche, the better)
  • unusual (skills or knowledge not often found together)
  • complementary (skills that reinforce and amplify each other)
  • experimental (skills gained through experience).

Aim for niche fame.

Get going. Then get good.

Writing and Thinking

When writing is thinking, re-writing is re-thinking.

When you put words on paper, you free up you mind which allows you to see things that you didn’t realize before.

When you write, you give yourself opportunity to go over ideas over and over again.

Imposter Syndrome

You are an imposter, because you are trying to do things out of your comfort zone.

But everyone is an imposter. David Perell didn’t know how to run a writing school before he tried. Jeff Bezos didn’t know how to run a trillion-dollar business like Amazon.

When you realize that everybody is an imposter, you realize that nobody is an imposter.

You have an obligation to share your ideas. This is how our society advances.