Roger C. Parker – Author Spotlight

EzineArticlesRoger C. Parker - EzineArticles Expert Author Expert Author Roger C. Parker is in today’s Author Spotlight. Roger is a best-selling author, coach, and consultant who helps others write books, find new readers, and sell more books. He encourages everyone to develop their writing skills: “Writing is everyone’s second job!”

At EzineArticles, we’re always preaching about the need for balancing quantity and quality with your article marketing strategy. Our recommendation is to write and submit a lot of really valuable material.

It would seem that Roger truly took our advice to heart… at least in this interview! His responses to our questions contain a lot of really valuable information – each one could easily be a stand-alone article.

So even though this particular Author Spotlight is longer than usual, we decided against editing it down for length because we didn’t want to lose even one nugget of his sage advice.

Invest a few minutes to read what Roger has to say. We promise it will be worth every second.

  1. Roger, when it comes to writing, you’re all about simplifying. Can you tell us more about that philosophy?

    Simplifying begins when a writer asks: “What’s the basic information that readers need to solve a problem or achieve a goal?” Writers tend to want to tell too much; they want to communicate every detail, they go off on tangents emphasizing exceptions rather than core knowledge or core ideas. By focusing on core concepts rather than writing an encyclopedia, writers can do a better job for their readers.

    While writing, chunking can play a major role in simplifying and communicating complex topics. Chunking refers to breaking up articles (and books, etc.) into manageable, bite-sized chunks. The two easiest, and most powerful, chunking tools are:

    • Subheads – Subheads inserted between paragraphs organize complexity and make it simple. Subheads provide a context for the information that follows. Subheads advertise the content that follows and focus the reader’s attention on one idea at a time.
    • Bulleted and Numbered Lists – Whenever possible, I encourage my coaching clients to replace information in sentences and paragraphs with lists. Like subheads, lists help readers focus on one idea at a time.

    Planning ahead is a writer’s easiest and most powerful simplifying tool. Planning before writing takes the stress out of writing. Whether you use outlines or mind maps, once you know the main ideas you want to communicate, “filling in the blanks” becomes relatively easy.

    SUMMARY: Plan ahead and determine the basic information your readers need from the article. Then “chunk” it into bite-size parts.

  2. Which EzineArticles tools do you commonly use? Why?

    The most important tool I use is the “draft” feature. When I started, I would write my articles online and immediately publish them. Now, I start articles and save them as drafts, for completion at a later date.

    The advantages of creating drafts is that it cures my perfectionist tendencies. I tend to write quickly, creating a framework containing the premise, three or four main points, and a conclusion for each article as quickly as possible.

    I return to the draft during a second, “polishing,” phase. Separating “framework” and “getting started” from polishing and self-editing has really made a difference for me. I wish I had realized the importance of the EzineArticles draft feature much earlier.

    Another EzineArticles tool that has made a big difference for me is the Insert Word feature which strips out unwanted formatting information from articles originally written in Microsoft Word. Word formatting can cause strange line-spacing and other problems that can result in wasted time trying to make everything look right.

    SUMMARY: Use the Draft feature to overcome perfectionism, and the Insert Word feature to strip Microsoft Word formatting.

  3. Your articles on have received close to 19,000 views. What does that translate to for you (i.e. click-throughs and sales)?

    It’s hard to know what is more important; the 19,000 views, the search engine visibility that they have created, or the fact that the process of writing my articles makes it easy for me to add “tangibility” to ideas rattling around inside my head.

    Perhaps EzineArticle’s most important role is in helping writers convert ideas and intentions into action. EzineArticles makes it very easy for individuals who have never written to discover the joys and benefits of writing without sending query letters to magazines or setting up a blog or website. EzineArticles makes it practical for authors to create an online platform, or visibility, that paves the way for their future success.

    In my case, EzineArticles has provided me with a training ground and way of measuring my website conversions and sales. I now have a much greater appreciation for the “marketing funnel” approach, and am in the process of creating a new series of landing pages and other incentives to better convert EzineArticles readers into coaching clients, e-book readers, and teleseminar/webinar attendees.

    SUMMARY: Use as a training ground for writing, measuring and evaluating the effectiveness of your content. Then use that information to constantly improve your conversion rate.

  4. You say writing is everybody’s second job. How would that apply to article authorship and marketing?

    As Ken Roman wrote in Writing that Works, most people form their impressions of you from your writing. Relatively few spend face-to-face time with you, but your ability to convincingly communicate in writing effects everyone: bosses, co-workers, prospects, potential partners, etc.

    The problem, of course, is that you can’t “take a pill” and learn to write. Writing is a learned skill. Except for a handful of grammatical tips and writing shortcuts, to learn to write you have to write! You can buy all the “how to” writing books you want, but until you write, you won’t learn how to write.

    Articles are the perfect training ground for writing books, blog posts, newsletters, proposals, white papers, etc. EzineArticles provides a great service by offering a platform that allows anyone to learn how to write better, at no cost or obligation. I stress “write better,” because–by analyzing the reader statistics that EzineArticles provides–authors can learn what works and what doesn’t, in terms of titles, topics, and article content. By comparing their best-read to their least-read topics, EzineArticles provides valuable feedback that writers can learn from.

    I’ve seen the impact that EzineArticles has had on several of my clients who, previous to writing for EzineArticles, had little or absolutely no SEO visibility and no writing background. By helping them identify a simple theme for their articles, several have changed their lives. One client, for example, has “run with the ball” and has written over 70 articles in less than 90 days. They have also discovered how easy writing articles can be when you have a system.

    SUMMARY: The best way to learn how to write is to… write! Develop a writing system that allows you to write more and write better articles – evaluate effectiveness and improve constantly.

  5. In your eyes, what makes you unique as an article marketer?

    First, I’ve always been an insatiable reader. My favorite “childhood adults” had shelf after shelf of Reader’s Digests and I would read them by the hour.

    When I graduated to the New Yorker, I was amazed by the ability of article writers like Berton Rouche and John McPhee to capture and maintain my attention for dozens of pages on topics that I wasn’t really interested in, but continued to read about. At an early age I began trying to analyze where their mysterious power comes from.

    Likewise, when reading books like the late Ed McBain’s 47th Precinct series, I was spellbound by his ability to “lock you in” with the first sentence of the first paragraph.

    Secondly, I’m a frustrated teacher. I wanted to be a college history professor, I wanted to be “Mr. Chips.” Until, of course, I realized the realities teaching; pay, meetings, rules, committees, parents, grading papers, etc. Writing articles and mentoring other article writers allows me the pleasures of teaching without the need to dress up in a tuxedo to attend an alumni tea at the college president’s house, etc.

    Finally, and this just occurred to me, I want to know how things work. My grandmother used to give me clocks to take apart. I have always been interested in “processes.” I followed the building of the St. Lawrence Seaway and I remained fascinated by the Air Traffic Control system that brings order out of chaos. My interest in “order” and “why” was reflected in my books about WordPerfect and Microsoft Office, because I wanted to share a simpler approach to software mastery than the usual “information overkill” combined with “lack of relevance” for those who were “Dummies.”

    I received a great deal of pleasure, incidentally, from writing the “…for Dummies” books that I wrote.

    SUMMARY: Embrace a writing style and niche that excites you. Be an insatiable reader and discover the subtle ways authors in your field of interest grab the reader’s attention. Avoid information overkill and lack of relevance.

  6. You’ve sold over 1.6 million copies of your 38 books, yet you only have 37 articles on our site. Even more ironic is the fact that with an average of over 500 views each, your articles obviously work! What’s up with that?

    Wow! You don’t pull any punches, do you!? ;-)

    Unfortunately, unexpected events have a way of interfering with plans. I was quite excited by Jeff Herring’s “100 Articles in 100 Days” challenge, and was writing one a day when my wife had a heart attack and had to have bypass surgery. The weeks that followed were a blur, and–probably as a reaction to stress–I was unable to write as much as I had hoped during the month that followed.

    I was especially frustrated because, as part of the direction that EzineArticles and Jeff Herring provides, I had completely revised my approach to articles. Basically, in order to meet the 100 Articles in 100 Days challenge, I had to completely change the way I approached article writing. Instead of the long articles I have been writing most of my life, I learned how to write faster and more concisely. I forced myself to chunk my previous “omnibus” approach to articles into shorter, more focused articles. I was doing well, until I “fell off the wagon” in April.

    Now that I realize the power of short, focused articles, and have become more efficient in my writing habits, I plan to reach my 100 articles goal and continue to develop ideas and promote them on EzineArticles.

    But, for now, my biggest satisfaction and reward has been observing how my writing and coaching clients have benefited from EzineArticles. Ask me again in 60-90 days, and I’ll have a different story to tell!

    SUMMARY: Realize the power of short, focused articles. Become efficient in your writing. Take up challenges like the 100 Articles in 100 Days Article Challenge and others.

You’re reading this sentence, so obviously you’ve invested the time to read all of Roger’s extremely insightful interview. Now make that investment pay off today by writing and submitting a few more high-quality, original articles that embrace some of his philosophies.

While you’re at it, why not leave a comment about what you’ve discovered in today’s Author Spotlight!



EnzineArticles offers the most and the best training materials I have found, hands down! What do they want from you in return? Just that you write, write well and write more often. That’s a deal you can’t beat!

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 11:30 AM



Bingo Fred!

That’s the deal.

Also, Thanks Roger for allowing us to interview you!

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 11:43 AM


J. Biddle writes:

What a great article! I am really looking forward to getting started writing.

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 12:11 PM


Tom Dewell writes:

The tips on “chunking” were valuable to me and hearing (again) the outrageous idea that you learn to write by….. writing :-)

Thanks Roger for sharing

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 12:15 PM



Very useful. Simplified elegence. I am happy find echoes of my ming in ‘planning’ and ‘mind maps’ that make wrting effortless. And, I have learnt about the use of ‘draft’ articles and press exposure features.

Thanks Chris and Roger.

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 12:26 PM


Catherine writes:

A succinct, useful and informative interview. I use and abuse the draft function. He gave me a heads up though on “breaking sentences into lists” which had fleetingly crossed my mind. I immediately put into effect this time round by retracting and revising a pending article. It does make for cleaner and more effective communication.

Great info. Thank you.

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 12:54 PM



Profoundly useful! I’m writing away and can immediately apply the tool of “premice, 3-4 main points, and conclusion. Coming from someone who wrote a book and am now learning how to write articles, I can’t thank you enough.

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 1:01 PM


Ed Durham writes:

Roger has a real ability to deliver information in a captivating down-to-earth fashion. His insights and methods have been helpful in developing my own writing skills. His explanations regarding the tools he uses and why are priceless.

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 1:22 PM


Alejandro Tornato writes:

Roger, thank you very much for sharing an extremely interesting interview, and for your valuable comments.
I am a public speaker, President of a Toastmasters chapter in Worcester, Massachusetts, but I want to do more writing.
I will definitely apply your suggestions in my future articles.
Thank you again.
Alejandro Tornato.

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 1:36 PM


SK Sartell writes:

I am not a writer. I want to be a writer. My own EzineArticles are such beginner efforts.

This interview is a great help.
Thank you

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 1:46 PM



Nice article with few good “chunks” of helpful information. I’m inspired to wrie some more by your energy and commitment to write in spite of life’s obstacles and distractions. Thanks

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 2:15 PM


John writes:

This is all good info. I’m just starting out at this article writing game (submitted first two articles yesterday), and am trying to soak up as much information as I can.

Thanks for the advice.

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 2:19 PM


Wanda Beckett writes:

Thank you for the great tips. I am new to the Ezine family, just submitted my first article today. I am grateful for your insight. Very valuable information. I will use it wisely, thanks !

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 2:26 PM


Jeff Hopeck writes:

Your article is a masterpiece! As a 2-time author, I have to say the number of books you have sold is astonishing. I would love to know how many sales came as a result of your article views, or at least a ballpark number. Very impressive!

Thanks for taking the time to write such a thorough post, and best wishes. Hope to hear more great insights from you again soon.

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 3:18 PM



I’m excited about the conversion from Word feature. I wasn’t aware of that. The only time I used the draft feature, my draft disappeared (in less than the allotted time allowed to save it.)

Thanks for another good interview!

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 3:45 PM


bet writes:

Thanks for a practical down-to-earth article. I never thought of a draft before. I am trying to write. Have massive writers’ block. I signed up for the 100 and have sumitted 0. Maybe with this last boost you sent, I’ll get going.

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 3:52 PM


Geoff writes:

Excellent interview. I think I`ll start applying the points about subheadings a little more than I do at present.

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 4:01 PM


Ed writes:

Thanks Roger,

Your interview here in EzineArticles gives hope and directions to the learner, who has a desire in learning how to write articles, story books, or any thing of interests.

Your breakdown on “Subhead’s” bullets, number lists, chunking, framwork, and polishing methods, are great tips, witch gives the new writer, heads up in his/hers beginings to write there first article.

This has to be one of the best articles, in the learning of writing articles in EzineArticles I’ve read.

Not only is the interview and the content here good, but its an inspriation for me to take up the 100 day challenge in begining to write an articles.

Roger, Hat’s off, for a great interview, that you presented…

Thanks again…

Ed :)

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 4:33 PM


Lovie Hobbs writes:

Thanks for the valuable insight on article marketing.
Perhaps, one day I will be able to complete the 100 articles in 100 days challenge.


Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 4:35 PM


Michelle Cubas writes:

Thanks for all the sharing you’ve done.

Michelle Cubas, CPCC

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 4:39 PM


Michelle Cubas writes:


How did you obtain the URL on your Twitter comment? That led me to you.

Please send your response to Thanks.

Michelle Cubas, CPCC

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 4:40 PM


marco brown writes:

Thanks for sharing this information because the knowledge shared proves to be an asset for so many. I really enjoyed the tips.

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 6:29 PM


Ivonne Vega writes:

Great information. It has made me look at article writing in a more positive way. I will begin by starting more drafts. I have alot of ideas for articles.

Comment provided June 8, 2009 at 10:45 PM


ian jason writes:

thanks, roger, for such great insights. especially coming from you.
you did nail me on the perfectionism part. i just need to take a bite of an idea and then follow it with a draft. that would indeed push me to write continually.
many thanks.

Comment provided June 9, 2009 at 7:30 AM


Jt Clough writes:

Since I was a kid I’ve been told that my writing is good, concise & useful. I’ve done many things in my life, most of them in a very creative way, but haven’t focused on writing for a very long time.

With “blogging” becoming so a huge deal on the web, my writing started happening more and more often. I wrote a few articles and submitted them to Ezine a few years ago. I’m back now and find it HUGELY useful in providing direction, as well as motivation to write really good articles… and to develop that part of my creative life that also in the end provides a fantastic way to make a living!

Thank you Ezine and Roger for the insights.

Comment provided June 9, 2009 at 8:04 AM


Meggin McIntosh writes:

Great interview…and I agree with all that Roger shared…and it’s amazing that each of your articles gets so many views – and you have only a few articles, really. Hope your wife is doing better. I’m in on the HAHD challenge, too, but have not had a major life event to contend with.

Comment provided June 9, 2009 at 8:52 AM


Carla McNeil writes:

Excellent information, thank you very much! The new piece of information for me is about the press exposure. I have been using the draft feature since taking Jeff Herring’s Viral Article Marketing and I love it. Like Roger I outline and start my article and then go back to it and polish it off. Thanks very much and I look forward to reading more!

Comment provided June 9, 2009 at 9:07 AM



Thanks Roger for sharing so many writing experiences and how to progress.
The word omnibus used in the context of article writing has stuck with me.
I am one of those who suffer of the omnibus syndrome.

Gabriele (Not a native English speaker)

Comment provided June 9, 2009 at 2:34 PM


Merrill Clark writes:

Thanks for so much valuable advice!

Writing online articles is such a powerful technique to get more exposure to a website or a blog, I’m really surprised that more business owners don’t take advantage of it.

Thanks as always,

Merrill Clark
Direct Response Copywriter

Comment provided June 10, 2009 at 11:59 AM


Lori Benavides writes:

Great advice…thanks so much for sharing these great tips!

Comment provided June 15, 2009 at 9:43 AM


genewolfe writes:

Hi Roger,
Congats to your success. I love “dummies books”.
Your insight into article writing is very helpful.
Thank you.


Comment provided June 15, 2009 at 8:43 PM


Shirley Bass writes:

Wow! What an interview. Congrats Roger. I have several of those “for Dummies” books on my shelf.

I get excited about the learning process and am looking forward to studying your blog, websites, etc.

Thanks for the interview and info.

Shirley Bass

Comment provided June 16, 2009 at 9:33 AM


Jim Eddy writes:

I wrote my first article shortly after being diagnosed with leukemia. I am now in remission and am encouraged by your interview to start writing again. Unexpected events can slow us down but not stop us.

Comment provided June 18, 2009 at 5:00 PM


Matthew Mathan writes:

Its quite remarkable how much options we have these days. Taking action is not really as tough as we thought it was.

Its wonderful to see so many people keep up with their passions no matter what comes in the way.

Keep up the good work!


Comment provided June 27, 2009 at 1:59 AM


Stephen Monday writes:

Clear and concise! This is hammered into article writers inso they become better writers. Being able to capture attention and hold it as well.., is a skill worth having as a professional Copywriter.

Thank you for your efforts, and coaching.
Sincerely, Stephen Monday

Comment provided December 4, 2009 at 7:14 AM


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