Years ago, web hosting company Globat had a special offer on their main page with a timer counting down to midnight—the time at which their special offer would expire. The next day they’d have a special offer with the exact same price point and the exact same countdown.
When sales pitches say, “Hurry, this is your last chance,” it pushes people into making a purchase decision immediately. If you fake the last chance, imagine how your customer will feel when they later learn that you lied. Chances are your customer will feel manipulated and they’ll start to look for other areas where you mislead them as well.
There is nothing more annoying than getting an email at 3 pm on Sunday afternoon and reading for the first time about an offer that ends at midnight that night. If you’re going to put out something with a deadline, give customers some notice.
You’re offering a special deal that ends on Sunday at midnight. Then on Monday morning you email your list and tell them that, due to popular demand, you’ve extended the special sale for another week. While some customers might be happy to be able to get the good deal, others will think that you didn’t get enough sales and so you’re desperately trying to entice people into buying at the discounted rate.
Your customer has purchased a service from you and you use their captive attention to sell them more or deeper levels of service. This leaves your customer wondering when—if ever—the service begins and the sales pitch actually ends.
If you claim that you or your product will enable the person to instantly become an expert at what it is that you do, chances are what you do isn’t that hard to master in the first place.
Learn how companies get their greatest opposition to work on their behalf in this 10-minute video, originally presented as a talk at the Persuaders Society on December 6, 2012.
In her landmark study of race and American literature, Playing in the Dark (1992), Toni Morrison argued that literary history has taken for granted a certain set of assumptions, including the understanding that “American literature is free of, uninformed, and unshaped by the four-hundred-year-old presence of, first, Africans and then African Americans in the United States” and that “this presence [...] had no significant place or consequence in the origin and development of that culture’s literature” (4-5). Morrison’s work provides a thoughtful and insightful study of race in American narrative and has inspired a generation of scholars to continue the study of race and ethnicity in American literature. However, much of this work (but certainly not all, as evidenced by Frederick Luis Aldama’s recent collection Analyzing World Fiction: New Horizons in Narrative Theory [Texas, 2011]) tends to fall outside the scope of formal narrative studies. And just as Susan Lanser’s 1986 ground-breaking article “Toward a Feminist Narratology” has inspired scholars to explore the fruitful possibilities of a feminist narrative theory that engages an intersectional approach to issues related (but not limited to) gender, the editors hope to compile a collection of essays that similarly engages the study of race, ethnicity, and narrative in the Americas, a cultural-geo-political area that we conceive of broadly that is not simply bounded by the nation-state of the U.S. Following Aldama’s collection, we hope to provide a work that encompasses a diversity of voices, subjects, and approaches to the study of narrative, race, and ethnicity.
To that end, we invite proposals for a collection of essays that will examine the intersections of race, ethnicity, and narrative focused on texts produced by authors with cultural ties to the Americas, a region that has seen the widespread sale of African slaves, the decimation of indigenous peoples in the wake of European colonialism, the hybridization of settler-colonials with roots in Spain, and the systematic mistreatment of Asian immigrants, as well as a cultural history that has needed to be ever-mindful of that heritage. It is the belief of the editors that “the Americas” share a unified cultural history, particularly with respect to issues of race and ethnic identity, and that narratives produced by artists in many American nations reflect that shared history. As such, the editors would like this volume to include as many diverse voices, backgrounds, and identities as possible.
We seek proposals for essays that will address the various ways that the formal study of narrative intersects productively with methodologies of critical race studies, post-colonial theory, and general ethnic studies. In other words, following the example set forth by Lanser, how can issues of identity help us better understand the workings of narrative, and how can a formal study of narrative assist us in the study of narrative forms? We seek essays that engage the diversity of possible theoretical approaches, as well as works that explore a multiplicity of ethnic voices and audiences. We do not wish to define what it means to study narrative, race, and ethnicity in the Americas; rather, we hope to provide a starting point for the variety of directions such a study can take.
Proposals for essays should be between 750 and 1000 words and should clearly articulate their theoretical position and identify the narratives to be analyzed. Completed abstracts are due by March 31, 2013 and can be sent to James J. Donahue, Jennifer Ho, or Shaun Morgan. We welcome questions or inquiries about this volume prior to this date, as well. Submitters will be notified about the status of their proposals by May 31, 2013 and final essays of 5,000-6,000 words will be due on January 31, 2014.
Although we do not have a formal agreement with a press just yet, an editor for the Ohio State University Press Series on the Theory and Interpretation of Narrative has expressed strong interest in reviewing this collection.
Possible topics (though others are welcome as well) include:
It’s always interesting to see and hear people tell their story.