Bad Language with Matthew Stibbe

Some would call Matthew Stibbe a Renaissance man. In addition to being the author of the blog Bad Language, this multi-talented wordsmith is passionately involved in a variety of areas. He is an entrepreneur, a seminar speaker, consultant, and a pilot.

“I am a fan of blogs. I use mine, Bad Language (www.badlanguage.net), to get attention for my business named Articulate Marketing. In January 2006, I started my blog when I launched the new business. It has brought me both new clients and great email from readers. I want to be the best possible blogger I can be,” said Matthew Stibbe. (Read Matthew’s post on business blogging at www.badlanguage.net/?p=71).

“One person I admire is Guy Kawasaki. I am intrigued by what I can learn from him. His book ‘The Macintosh Way’ got me started in my business. He has a very popular blog that has a huge readership. I aspire to have Bad Language be that popular,” said Matthew.

“For some biographical history: I took a year off between finishing school and going to university and started a business. My computer games company paid for my college. I graduated from Oxford University with a history degree. Oxford has a method of teaching called ‘tutorials’. This is where students write an essay, read them aloud to their tutor, and then argue about the subject. I learned how to read and absorb a lot of information quickly from this. It also gave me the ability to talk with someone who knows much more than me. I valued the use of words,” said Matthew. “From this I started designing and editing the university publications.”

When I graduated, I wondered what I was going to do with my life. Computer games were much more fun, so I built up my company. Within 10 years it grew to 75 people. I am a historian who wrote computer games. I am half geek, half writer. One of the things I did with my company was delete all the phones from my developers’ offices. I found that it takes about 15 minutes to concentrate enough to get into the ‘flow state’. The ‘flow state’ is where one loses track of time and is very creative. When the phone rings, or there is any interruption, that flow state is interrupted. Then, the developer has to go back to square one. It wastes 15 minutes. That is why I removed the phones. My developers were much more creative after that. Then, I sold my company in 2000 to a management team.” said Matthew.

After selling his business Matthew took a sabbatical and learned to fly. He also started to write. “I wrote for a lot of magazines such as Air and Space / Smithsonian, Popular Science, and the Robb Report – amongst others. I do product reviews, plane reviews and a variety of other topics,” Matthew said. He also writes for leading British business magazines.

“I started Articulate Marketing in 2005. Here, I tell others that our passion is communication. I provide a variety of writing from white papers, website copy to case studies. I also write speeches. Writing in business isn’t about entertainment. It is about persuading and informing people. Some of my bigger named clients include Microsoft, KPMG, and the British government. Visit his website at www.articulatemarketing.com for more information.

Even though not formally trained in psychology, the subject passionately intrigues Matthew. “I am fascinated by how things work. I am fascinated by how I get up in the morning (see his post on Bad Language at (www.badlanguage.net/?p=200). I am fascinated by how short words are more powerful than long words (read his post about this at www.badlanguage.net/?p=44). In short, I am endlessly excited about how to do things,” Matthew says.

“I believe that writing involves two psychologies. One belongs to the author and one to the reader. The author is concerned about how to keep the reader motivated, keep their attention, etc. The reader is concerned about what makes them interested. Why should they read something? This is where the use of short words comes into play. Short quotations are much more powerful than larger blocks of quotation. Short words work much better,” says Matthew.
(See above reference to posting).

“I write for a lot of magazines such as Air and Space Museum, Popular Science, and the Robb Report – amongst others. I do product reviews, plane reviews and a variety of other topics,” Matthew said.

“My hobby is flying. I have what is known as ‘compulsive flying disorder’,” says Matthew. He holds a private pilot license. He obtained his instrument rating in Orlando, FL. (Instrument rating is an advanced flying rating). With 500 hours under his wing, Matthew has been flying for six years. He has great stories about it, too. These can be located on his other blog titled ‘Modern Pilot’. Visit his blog address at www.modernpilot.com.

“A one of a kind experience that I have had the pleasure of enjoying is riding the Space Shuttle Simulator in Houston. That is something I will never forget,” Matthew said.

For another sample of what entertains Matthew, visit www.badlanguage.net/?p=211. Here, there is a game titled ‘Human Space Invaders’. It is a fun video where students re-enact the classic game in stop motion video. “It made me laugh,” said Matthew.

Born and raised in England, Matthew now resides in the London area. He is community-involved.

“Picking priorities is important to me. At the end of the day I like to find out what other people finding interesting and informing. I take it from there,” Matthews says.

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