It all started with a blog post from Rogare about Siegfried Vögele, "The Forgotten Man of Direct Mail Fundraising?" Except none of us had forgotten Siegfried Vögele. We revere him. Every time we add a PS to a direct mail appeal, we pay tribute to Professor Vögele's discoveries in a laboratory in Munich.
Which got Agent John thinking: What are the common influences for fundraising creatives? Could we create a family tree of who we learned from?
Lisa Sargent suggested photographing our book shelves. For me, that would mean a stitched-together panoramic encompassing some 500+ titles. Most of those books I've read once, and then they sit there, in case I have to "optimize a landing page."
But I have a much smaller subset of books within arm's reach, for frequent reference. These books comfort me. It's my DESK library. I just have to spin my chair to pull from it a favorite title and relearn some important point. Voila, my desk library...
So to kick off this Lepp/Sargent idea of a family tree of influences, here are the authors/titles in my desk library, NOT in alphabetical order:
4 Tiny Essentials books from White Lion: by George Smith, Adrian Sargeant, Harvey McKinnon, Neil Sloggie ¶ Literary Terms ¶ The Associated Press Handbook ¶ The Book of Forms: A handbook of poetics ¶ Murray: Writing to Deadline ¶ A Dictionary of Literary, Dramatic and Cinematic Terms ¶ When Words Collide (grammar/style guide) ¶ 100 Things Every Designer Needs to Know About People ¶ Sargeant/Shang: Fundraising Principles and Practice ¶ Caples: Tested Advertising Methods ¶ Joyaux: Firing Lousy Board Members ¶ Brooks: The Fundraiser's Guide to Irresistible Communications ¶ The Copy Workshop Workbook ¶ Weissman: Presenting to Win (best case book ever) ¶ Brooks: How to Turn Your Words into Money ¶ Panas: Making a Case Your Donors Will Love ¶ Sugarman: Advertising Secrets of the Written Word ¶ Schwab: How to Write a Good Advertisement ¶ Siegfried Vögele: Handbook of Direct Mail ¶ Hill: Emotionomics ¶ The WHY Axis ¶ Joyaux/Ahern: Keep Your Donors ¶ Excellence in Fundraising in Canada ¶ Sharpe: Mail Superiority ¶ The Adweek Copywriting Handbook ¶ Thomas: 30 Letters That Changed the World ¶ Warwick: How to Write Successful Fundraising Appeals ¶ Craver: Retention Fundraising ¶ The Back of the Napkin (creativity) ¶ Flesch: The Art of Readable Writing ¶ Schwartz: Breakthrough Advertising