Prince of Denmark's Copywriting Clinic
"Peace, break thee off; look, where it comes again!"
"In the same figure, like the king that's dead."
Shakespeare's amazing play, Hamlet, begins right in the middle of the action. There's no build up. No long runway to get to the exciting stuff.
The Bard skips the exposition all together. That important part of a story that sets the stage and introduces the characters has to be filled in for the audience. Usually happens with flashbacks and references to the past in the dialogue.
The play begins with the changing of the royal guards in the middle of the night. The guards, Marcellus and Bernardo, brought the prince's best friend, Horatio. They want him to see the unbelievable things they've seen during the previous 2 nights.
They don't dare tell the prince what they've seen. They want his friend to do that.
As the three appear on stage the ghost of the dead king appears and terrifies them all.
Only later do we get the story of how the king died.
Because the play is about young Hamlet getting revenge for his father's murder... and not about his motivation for vengeance... there's no need to tell the story of how the King died at the beginning of the story. Instead, Shakespeare gets right into the story of revenge.
This storytelling technique is called "in media res," which is Latin for "in the middle of things."
But what does this have to do with copywriting?
I go into detail in chapter 7 of my new book "Symphonic Copywriting." The title of Chapter 7 is... "Begin with the Explosive Climax in Mind."
"In media res" is a powerful technique in long-form sales letters.
In fact, it was this chapter above all that caught the attention of Joe Schriefer when I wrote to him about my book. If you haven't heard of Joe, he's responsible for growing Agora Financial to a $300 million a year company. They Sell financial newsletters with long-form sales copy.
My new book is coming out soon. I don't have a firm date yet, but it should be in the next 30-45 days.
To find out why Joe Schriefer and I are so excited about using "in media res" in sales copy, click the link below and I'll add you to my "new book notification" list.
Plus, I'll send you the first two chapters of the book for free!
Here's the link:
Hope you have an action-packed day! And may your copy ever be melodic and harmonious!