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𝗜 𝗹𝗶𝘀𝘁𝗲𝗻 • 𝗜 𝗿𝗲𝗮𝗱 • 𝗜 𝗼𝗯𝘀𝗲𝘀𝘀 • 𝗜 𝘄𝗿𝗶𝘁𝗲 • 𝗕𝗼𝗼𝗸𝘀: amzn.to/3mzdiUg 𝗟𝗲𝘁𝘁𝗲𝗿𝘀: jjpryor.substack.com

Because we stupidly thank them for it when they do.

Credit: Steve Jurvetson, CC BY 2.0, Wikimedia Commons

MacKenzie Scott has now donated 8 billion dollars of her personal wealth to charities. While that act is noble in itself, her estimated wealth increased $23 billion during the same period.

Jeff Bezos’s ex-wife literally can’t give her money away fast enough.

Because she shouldn’t have had that much money in the first place. Neither should her ex-husband have. And neither should the other 717 billionaires in America.

719 people who collectively now own more than 4x the wealth of the bottom half of Americans.

Wealth is Out of Control and Charity is Making it Worse

We’ve now entered the age of philanthrocapitalism, where the world’s richest CEOs, genetic lottery winners…


Recounting the scariest part of my childhood

Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

He preferred to be called T. He’d get immediately soured if you referred to him by anything else. But we all loved him nonetheless.

T loved listening to 90s grunge music, binge eating on Friday nights, and having long conversations with friends who didn’t always listen to what he’d have to say. His friends called him a ‘chill cat’ and loved partying with him.

But some people ignored him on the regular, much to T’s disappointed chagrin. He still loved them nonetheless.

Roommates With a Serial Killer

T was just one of my many roommates while I was flexing out my angsty teenage years. Our…


Are you feeling lucky?

Photo by Edge2Edge Media on Unsplash

Do you ever feel the urge to gamble? Spin that wheel. Bet on double 0’s. Arm wrestle someone for your house.

Haha, just joking. Most of us can’t afford one of those anymore.

But alas, I’m not talking about watching the dice fall in an artificially oxygenated illuminated faux-art museum full of entertainment, booze, and gambleholics.

I’m talking about the simplistic joy found in discovery.

Google has it. …


#1— Give tips (to me!)

Image modified from original photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels

Most of us are by now familiar with the monthly bonuses Medium has been handing out. If you got one, fantastic! I’m certainly enjoying mine and am planning on spending it in a variety of productive and useful ways.

Things such as:

  • A computer monitor so I can stop staring at this tiny laptop screen with its ant-like words.
  • Wireless earpods that won’t break down in 363 days just before the warranty expires and possibly because I sweat more in the tropics than an earpod product manager deemed humanly possible.
  • Artist fees for another humor book (we just finished outlining…


And I Laughed

Image ‘masterfully’ created by author

When I logged in to do some housekeeping on Medium yesterday, I had to check my eyes. My follower count was 1,000 less than the day before.

First, I laughed.

Second, I made a most unmanly noise.

Third, I clicked the follower link no less than 5,000 times to make sure it wasn’t just a bug.

Was it a bug?

It turns out, no. It wasn’t.

Well, not the kind of bug that annoys the shit out of me on hot summer afternoons here in the subtropics while I read books in the park. Seriously, there’s a thing called midges here that drive me…


Because we don’t know where they are anymore

Photo by Zachary DeBottis from Pexels

Serial killers have become a point of fascination in recent years. From the amazing award-winning Bear Brook podcast to Mindhunter on Netflix, media producers guessed (correctly) the public would become captivated by these outliers of society.

So today I wondered, would people also be interested in knowing about several notorious killers who could be sitting beside them in a cafe right now?

Because here’s 3 of them.

1. The Norwegian Kiss of Death


And we probably can’t stop it

Photo by JESHOOTS.com from Pexels

If you’ve ever had the pleasure of flying a drone before, they can be pretty entertaining. For some of them, you have to fly them purely by eyesight. Others use radio transmission to give a first-person point of view to control the aircraft.

Some even use built-in GPS systems alongside some pretty advanced AI to return home if they ever lose contact with the user.

Neat.

But what’s not so neat is their use in dropping bombs on strangers. And as the news showed this month — they no longer even require humans to tell them to do so.

The Origins of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

The…


By blasting it out on the news, apparently

Photo by Kindel Media from Pexels

Modern problems require modern solutions.

If you were a criminal involved in the acts of international drug trafficking, money laundering, and murder — how would you communicate with your co-workers?

Sure there’s Whatsapp, LINE, or secret codes written in newspaper personals, but who can trust those companies to keep your secrets? They are being haggled by the FBI after all.

Step in ANOM — the solution to the underworld’s social media dilemma.

Retweet If You Like Murder

If you’re an old-school mafioso and you’re reading this, firstly, please don’t kill me. Secondly, you’re probably familiar with the Canadian company called Phantom Secure.

The underworld’s greatest…


I want to eat this. Photo by Hisu lee on Unsplash

***Feedium update #8***

Hi Mediumites,

Just wanted to share some of the latest (and potentially greatest?) from Feedium during this past month.

Enjoy!

From JJ’s Vault

  1. I hit 10,000 followers! A) I’m grateful, it’s an awesome goal I’ve been working on for a while now. B) I shared some of my insights on how to get there if you’re also on the hunt.
  2. I did a deep dive into opening lines/hooks. I collected the first line (or few) from 90 of Medium’s biggest articles and organized them by genre. …


Win over your reader — right from the start!

Photo by Wynand van Poortvliet on Unsplash

“I made this up for added effect.” — J.J. Pryor

They say the only purpose of your first written sentence is to convince someone to read the next one.

The purpose of the next sentence is to convince someone to read the one after that.

And so it goes on in perpetuity until the very last word is read — you hope.

This article is an attempt to help you improve your own writing of openers, hooks, interest magnets, and tittilating wordlings. …

J.J. Pryor

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