Who the **** is ‘Vegas Dave’?

 

Do I live in a mansion?

No.

Do I want to?

You bet your ass I do.

Will I one day from sports betting?

Who knows.

Some people do.

Dave Oancea, also known as ‘Vegas Dave’ is one of those guys. Dave is a sports betting professional based in Las Vegas.

vegasdave1
Vegas Dave – the Las Vegas Millionaire Sports Bettor with some Cold Hard “Winnings”

He mainly bets on baseball and American football but has been known to throw a few hundred thousand dollars on UFC events as well.

Dave bet a cool $1 million on UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Miesha Tate to win her fight in July 2016.

One thing I’ve noticed about Dave is he doesn’t always look for “value.”

He will bet favourites in a match, and sometimes heavy favourites.

He mostly bets on baseball and I often see his winning slips and a lot of the time he’s betting favourites at odds of around 1/2.

He also loves parlays or multiples. This is where you put two “sure things” together into a bet to double up on your odds and enjoy more winnings.

I’ve seen him have some outside winners in the 6/4 range and the like, but generally his picks agree with the bookmakers.

He is successful because he is not trying to “beat the bookmakers”.

He’s simply betting on the most probable outcome, and that comes from him studying the sport he’s betting on.

This makes him certain of a result; and, if anything, the bookmakers’ odds can probably solidify his thought that his selection is correct.

What he’s not doing is betting on 5/1 outsiders in the hope that occasionally they’ll win.

What he does is he bets on probable outcomes, and that comes from his knowledge of the sport he is betting on.

He is known to avidly watch NFL and NBA and has an in-depth knowledge of the sport. He isn’t betting on hunches, but he believes he gets his “edge” from trusting what he sees with his own eyes.

He won’t pick something because it’s “value” but because he knows that he has the best chance of winning with that selection.

Miesha Tate was a big favourite for her 2016 fight, but Dave didn’t care. He could have been cashing in $400,000 if she had won and that turns into a very good day, week, month or even year at the office.

When you have $1 million to play with, you could make one decent winning bet a year and live a pretty comfortable life.

It’s highly likely that Tate will deliver and put yet another six figures into Dave’s bank account.

Dave can do this because he’s already won over a long period of time.

Dave can be found on Twitter.

@itsvegasdave

Dave is somebody all gamblers, professional or otherwise, should look up to.

He stakes huge amounts of money on baseball every week and, guess what – he actually wins.

His betting record is actually pretty sick if you look at it.

He has winning days, months and years.

He very rarely makes a losing pick.

I don’t know how he does it and I’d love to know.

You can sign-up to his tips at his website: http://www.itsvegasdave.com

I am not an affiliate for this guy. I just know that he does great things with regards to sports betting.

He’s even slowly being banned by many sports books in his home country.

Unfortunately, that’s the reality of sports betting.

Bookmakers aren’t in the business to let you have their money.

If you consistently win large amounts of money, you can be pretty sure that you will be banned from ever placing another bet with that bookmaker.

He posts up winning tickets for tens of thousands and even hundreds of thousands of dollars weekly on his Twitter and Instagram accounts.

Instagram: @itsvegasdave

It’s funny that the second most-searched term after ‘Dave Oancea Net Worth’ is ‘Dave Oancea Scam’.

This guy is not a scam artist.

He really lives it.

How do I know?

Because I’ve seen the mansion he lives in.

He shares his whole life pretty much on Instagram.

He’s the guy who famously won $2.5 million on the Kansas City Royals after they won baseball’s World Series.

He also wagered $77,000 on Miesha Tate to beat Holly Holm as a massive underdog in their UFC bout… and she won, netting him an easy six figures of profit.

July 2016 update: Miesha Tate lost her fight and Dave lost $1 million of winnings.

You could say that’s a bad day at the office for Dave. He will learn from that defeat.

He’s simply a gambler who lost a bet.

His stake just happened to be $1 million.

Was it the wrong bet?

Absolutely, because it lost.

I don’t think Dave was using the 3% of his bank rule on that one. He’s a rich man but he’s not got $300 million stored away.

You could say he was trying to turn a few heads, make himself a bit more noticed and he was betting with his emotions rather than his head.

He’d already won money on Miesha Tate in the past and he had almost more belief in her than she did that she would win again.

He probably underestimated her opponent in the same way she did, and both were licking their wounds when Tate was knocked out in the very first round.

This is why it’s so important to know your opponent.

You are nearly always betting against a team or person as much as you are betting for one.

Anyway, back to Dave, he also famously wagered on the Dallas Cowboys to win the Superbowl as underdogs during the season and was sat in the third row to watch as they beat the Carolina Panthers at Superbowl 50 with relative ease.

This guy is living the dream is he not?

You’d think that every bookmaker in the country would have banned this guy by now.

The thing is, they make millions every year and what Dave wins from them is a drop in their ocean.

He also bets basketball.

He picks winners.

He’s a one-off.

And he clearly knows his shit.

Learn from him.

This is an excerpt from my book ‘The Online Sports Betting Bible’, available on Amazon.

Who the **** is ‘Vegas Dave’?

10 Ways the BBC Can Improve Their iPlayer Service

Today the BBC announced that it wants to compete with Netflix and Amazon Prime by improving its iPlayer platform. It hopes to do this by doubling its current user base by 2020 and offering better functionality and quality programming so the consumer watches programmes for longer.

The Director General of the BBC said that he wants iPlayer to be “The number one online TV service in the UK.”

So how can the BBC actually achieve this?

In this article I will look at some ways that the BBC can improve its iPlayer offering:

1. Change the look of the iPlayer platform
If iPlayer is to improve, it will have to modernise its current look to be more user-friendly. The way the app behaves on PlayStation is slow and clunky compared to Netflix.

2. Add an automatic ‘Auto-play next’ feature like in Netflix
Netflix is the biggest and most popular platform for streaming TV shows and movies. One reason that helped the binge-watching phenomenon is the automatic ‘Auto-play’ function they implemented. Once an episode is coming to an end, Netflix puts the next episode in the queue and automatically plays it – unless the user tells Netflix to stop the player. This has led to a binge-watching culture where it’s easy to just keep on watching. That’s what the BBC wants to do, yet BBC iPlayer doesn’t do this. Instead, it gives you recommended shows to watch, some of which are completely unrelated to the original content you were on. If it’s a series, I most likely out of anything on the platform want to watch the next episode. The BBC has to implement this change on the iPlayer.

3. Improve suggested shows that a user might enjoy
Make us have an account. The more invested we are in a product the more likely we are to continue using it. The BBC’s sign-up process is generally pretty arduous, though, or at least it always appeared that way, with the need to confirm emails and even wait for a period of time before using certain stuff. This is an archaic way of doing things on the Internet. People want things and they want them now. Make the sign-up process as simple as possible and instant. Take a few details but give us what we want quickly. Remember our logins automatically so we don’t have to keep signing in. This feature would then open up a world of opportunities for the iPlayer, from favourite lists and suggested shows specific to what users would enjoy.

4. In our account, let us add shows to our favourites
This is a simple one taken from Netflix, let us add our favourite shows to a ‘favourites’ list somewhere in our account. This would strengthen the link we feel to the platform, give us a place where we can store what we want to watch in the future and make us more likely to use the service in the future. The BBC can then find out exactly what we like and make better suggestions of what else we might want to watch on the iPlayer in the future.

5. Improve the reliability of the platform
I don’t know if it’s just me, especially when compared to Netflix, which I’ve watched on Smart TV as well as Apple TV and PlayStation and literally never had a problem with it, it seems that the iPlayer function is prone to crash a hell of a lot. It either buffers for no reason, even though you have a strong internet connection or it just malfunctions in some way. The BBC must improve this aspect of the service to gain credibility. A lack of reliability can give people a negative view of the platform as a whole which already pushes it down the list of players that people are going to watch.

6. Add a bigger back catalogue of shows
The BBC claims they don’t do this because of rights issues and it costing too much and yada-yada. People want to be able to watch their favourite shows from any time, any time. Ultimately, it would be great to be able to watch every episode of The Office or Fawlty Towers whenever we want. New shows are great but the BBC must know better than any institution that you sometimes can’t beat a golden oldie, and old shows inform the new ones. We must never forget the quality programming from the 70s, 80s and 90s.

7. Take off trailers airing before an episode is played
This isn’t YouTube. We’ve technically already paid for the content. I get why the BBC wants to push other similar TV shows to us but where’s the sense in when I am sitting down to watch a series them showing me another thing I could watch instead? I want to watch the show I’ve chosen to watch. We don’t need trailers. We know what we like. There are other ways we can hear about things: recommendations from friends, reviews in newspapers or magazines, or simply by pure luck or chance that we stumble onto something. Besides, I think people are prone to ignore adverts and just simply want to skip them almost instinctively so the trailers won’t be watched anyway and it just slows down our viewing experience. YouTube has made good revenue from its advertising but it’s a downside on the format as a whole. Most users skip adverts and the adverts border on being annoying. It would be sad to see the iPlayer adopting a similar approach to advertising as YouTube, even if it is other TV shows.

8. Make iPlayer a separate experience from the BBC website
Entering Netflix is an experience. The splash screen and the recognisable music reinforce the fact that you’ve made a decision to watch Netflix. Netflix does one thing and it does it well. The BBC has other irons in the fire like News and Sport but when we enter iPlayer we want to feel like we’ve gone somewhere different. We want to sometimes shut off from the world. The BBC has to keep this in mind when deciding how to improve iPlayer.

9. Let us watch shows for longer
A major downside of the iPlayer is a lot of their content is only available for 30 days after going out on the TV. This means we can miss the first episode or two of a series if we arrive late and have no way of watching the entire series. This is very off-putting of the platform in general. It comes back to the issue of money but if the iPlayer truly wants to be the best online provider of UK television content then they need to really look at this and improve on it.

10. Trial some programming as iPlayer-only
This could entice people who haven’t used the iPlayer before to delve into it. The first episode of a series could be put on the iPlayer well in advance of it going out on television. The BBC has already done this but I think they could make even more of it. Give people a reason to start using the iPlayer who maybe have never used it before. That’s their goal so they must think of strategies to help achieve this.

Do you like iPlayer? What are your suggestions for improvements to the service? Leave a comment.

10 Ways the BBC Can Improve Their iPlayer Service

Why People Go Into Business and Why Business is about Innovation Rather Than Invention

Let’s think of the richest people in the world today.

Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, Richard Branson, Mark Zuckerberg (to name a few). None of these men went into business with the sole intention of making money. They work because they have to.

Bill Gates had to create Microsoft. He had the ideas and he knew how to do it. Getting rich was just a by-product of his work.

Mark Zuckerberg created Facebook as an online tool which would help university students to connect with each other. He never imagined that this tool would end up as a platform used by over 1 billion people, or roughly 1/7th of the world’s population and his business would be worth over $1 trillion as of 2016.

Richard Branson was a poor student growing up so you could argue that he went into business to make money but it was not his sole intention. You could say making money was a mere 10% of his motivation. Once he made quite a bit of money it was probably a continual driving force to keep going but humans are not motivated just by money. Getting rich is normally a by-product or a happy coincidence.

Richard Branson especially has used opportunities to turn things which people were already doing into better versions. Virgin Records was not the first record company when it was founded in 1973, but instead, it was created to bring alternative music into the mainstream with the likes of The Sex Pistols and The Rolling Stones.

Later on, Virgin would be responsible for artists such as Phil Collins, The Spice Girls, David Bowie, Daft Punk and Katy Perry. Not bad for a company that was essentially started out of a flat in London. Branson also invented Virgin Airlines and Virgin Trains. Not particularly innovative businesses.

Aeroplanes have been flying since the early 1900s and Virgin Airlines wasn’t around until the 1980s.

Trains have been around since the early 1800s and Virgin Trains wasn’t started until 1997.

Branson noticed something that was big business and decided to make it better. He wasn’t happy with the luxuriousness or quality on flights or the sort of service he was getting on public transport so he decided to make better versions of both.

He wanted to create travel in his own image.

That’s innovation.

Successful people are, first and foremost, human beings

Wealthy people all have something in common: they are human and they enjoy helping other people.

Successful people all try and give something back

Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates donate millions of dollars every year to the poorest people on the planet, using a large portion of their incomes for helping out charities and people in need.

Most successful businessmen are not selfish and tight-fisted but instead altruistic.

They are not driven by money.

Humans have an innate need to survive, which does involve generating cash, but more than that we have a desire to create something and be helpful to others.

Barring Warren Buffett, all of these wealthy leaders have the same thing in common: they’ve all created something that helps people or brings joy to other people’s lives.

Innovation is more important than invention

Most things have now been invented. At least the bare bones have already been made.

We have the wheel, we have aeroplanes and we have computers.

The future is about innovating what’s already out there and improving people’s lives and making things easier.

Amazon has just started using drones in 2016 which are a way to deliver their goods to people more quickly and efficiently.

Drones are not exactly an invention, they more take what is already around and put it all together to create something new.

Being wealthy and rich is not necessarily always about invention but more innovation: taking something which is already there but doing it better.

Apple essentially did this in the 90s with the iPod. It was a different way of storing music than a CD but they took something which was very popular and selling well the Sony Walkman, and they innovated so much that you could store 10,000 songs on a device.

This innovative behaviour led to the boom of mp3s during the late 90s and 2000s and now we have iTunes and now very few people buy CDs.

Human beings are innately lazy or in other words ‘efficient’

Books are now available on Kindle and we even have audio books. We don’t even have to buy a physical copy of a book anymore or even take the time to read any longer. We can open up an audio book and have a story read to us by somebody, most likely through our Apple headphones.

History remembers the innovators, not the inventors

The telephone is one of the most-used inventions in the world yet barely 5% of the world could tell you the name of its inventor. I’d guess closer to 50+% could name Steve Jobs as the creator of the Apple iPod and iPhone.

Steve Jobs wasn’t an inventor. He simply innovated with technology that was already around.

Great actors are innovators, not inventors

Think of the wealthiest actors in Hollywood.

Johnny Depp earned around $50 million in 2016 alone and has a net worth of $400m. Nobody could have predicted when he was appearing in the film Nightmare on Elm Street that he would one day be worth that sort of money.

Johnny Depp most probably went into acting because he enjoyed it. He wasn’t chasing the dollar note.

Johnny Depp, like all modern actors, is an innovator rather than an inventor. Depp didn’t invent the style of acting. Rather he took things from other people to craft his characters.

Johnny Depp’s most successful movie character is Captain Jack Sparrow from the Pirates of the Caribbean movies. Depp admitted his character was based on Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards.

Depp was not the first actor but he simply did it better than almost everybody else. That’s how he made his fortune.

Money is a tool

Money doesn’t make you happy. It’s purely a tool to gain satisfaction and freedom. Money can provide you with a buffer from the world. It means you can say ‘no’ to more things and it gives you a certain amount of freedom.

With money, you don’t have to do things you don’t want to and you don’t really have to answer to anybody.

Wealthy people don’t need to work another day in their lives, but many, including Bill Gates, Richard Branson and Mark Zuckerberg are still innovating to this day even though they have already accumulated giant fortunes.

They could rest on their laurels and holiday for the rest of their lives but they choose not to because they are driven by something else.

As the saying goes, if you chase money it will run away from you.

These businessmen did not ever chase money.

Some could say they pogo-sticked their way around catching dollars as they flew way above all the other people running, jogging or crawling their way through life.

Who is Bill Gates?

Bill Gates is the creator and founder of computer software company Microsoft.

What is Bill Gates’ net worth?

Bill Gates has a net worth of $83 billion as of 2016.

Who is Mark Zuckerberg?

Mark Zuckerberg is the creator and founder of Facebook.

What is Mark Zuckerberg’s net worth?

Mark Zuckerberg’s net worth is $50 billion as of 2016.

Who is Richard Branson?

Richard Branson is the founder and creator of Virgin.

What is Richard Branson’s net worth?

Richard Branson is worth roughly $5 billion as of 2016.

Who is Johnny Depp?

Johnny Depp is a famous actor from America.

What is Johnny Depp’s net worth?

As of 2016, Johnny Depp is worth $400 million.

Why People Go Into Business and Why Business is about Innovation Rather Than Invention

What’s Going In The World?

donald-trump

The week that was 7-11 November 2016


Trump.

‘Merica voted this week. They elected Donald Trump as their new President of the United States.

The vote was 50/50 pretty much. People want change. They want difference. People aren’t happy with the status quo. Hillary Clinton wasn’t a strong enough candidate. Red beat Blue in a large portion of the United States. Will things change? A bit but not that much.

Almost 90% of blacks voted Clinton. They don’t want to see big-mouth Trump in charge.

Many Hispanics are also fearful of Trump and it was the majority white population that voted him in.

Protests and unrest occurred the next day in New York outside Trump’s own Tower block and the disapproving feelings of his stewardship will likely keep up pace in the coming weeks. America must come to terms with their new President, though; he was fairly and squarely voted into place and his election is as much a problem of the other leaders in America being weak as opposed to Trump being a strong candidate.

The financial markets reacted as they would to such big news but things will balance themselves out again. Much like the Brexit vote in the United Kingdom, early panic will pave the way to longer-term settlement and even growth.

Trump himself is a builder so we could see the USA actually grow its industry and make corporate America into an even stronger place, looking to compete with Asia.

Trump will also try and patch up relations with Russia as they look to take seriously the threat that ISIS or so-called Islamic State poses on Russia, Europe, USA and the Far East.

The pound falls

The pound has taken a beating recently and hit record lows but it should recover.

The dollar is so strong that even news as big as Trump won’t really affect it over the long or short-term.

Trump promised the Americans he’d build a wall to keep out Mexican immigrants. Let’s see if he keeps to his word.

What else has been going on this week?

Tram disaster in London

A tram going too fast de-railed in Croydon, killing 7 men and 1 women. The tram was just a mere 200 yards from its stop when it derailed and killed several passengers.

Not a great start to people’s mornings as the tram keeled over just after 6:00am as people most likely made their way to work and other places.

The driver was arrested and will face charges, most probably for negligence as he was speeding and his actions caused the derailment.

Horse racing lost the great jumper, Vautour 

A huge loss on Sunday occurred when it was revealed that top Cheltenham jumper Vautour sadly died at just 7 years old. It was described as a ‘freak’ accident; the horse supposedly breaking one of his legs whilst playing around in the paddock and the injury was too severe so the horse was put down.

Vautour was a 3-time winner around the Cheltenham course and was all set to appear at the same race track again this year but the huge shock news came as a devastating blow to the Willie Mullins yard as they lost one of their top stars to horse racing heaven.

Vautour was widely regarded as one of the best jumpers in the British Isles and he will be sorely missed but very fondly remembered by many.

Sport keeps us all going

Amidst the uncertainty and all the natural disasters and deaths, sport always gives us much joy and some certainty in a world that is uncertain.

People’s love for watching ball sports and horse racing will not cease as although it is unpredictable it gives people a level of certainty. They know the ball will be going in the net at some point, or the horses will make it round the track and provide us with excitement.

It’s a safe haven where there are no outside influences to spoil the view.

That was the week that was 7-11 November 2016. 

What’s Going In The World?

What happened to me on a 30-hour water fast

So I’ve just been reading an excellent blog post by Aubrey Marcus on his Onnit website called ‘Nine to Nirvana: 9 Exercises for Mastering the Mind’ [link here] about 9 different ideas of enlightening the mind: including yoga, different forms of meditation and some other things.

#5 on his list was fasting, and it reminded me of when I did a water fast a couple of years ago for about 30 hours, sort of as an experiment. Two things happened, and I thought I’d share my experiences, both good and bad.

Now, I know 30 hours isn’t that long but it really was a struggle, especially as somebody who is so reliant on food. At that time I was eating at least 5 or 6 times a day and food was as much about the mental as it was about the physical.

‘Come on, you need to eat now. It’s been three hours since you last ate,’ regardless of whether my body was hungry or not, my mind decided that it was time to eat.

Well, sometimes you’ve got to tame the wild mind with something a bit brutal, and that was my water fast.

So I was reading online about doing a water fast. Basically you do nothing but drink water for a 30-hour period. Some people do it for up to seven days, and I don’t really know how they do it, although I would hazard a guess that the mental symptoms go away after more than 48 hours, but I still think it must be pretty hard.

So I went from around 2pm one day to 11pm the next night without eating, solely relying on water.

The first day and night was pretty easy. I’d eaten quite a big breakfast that morning so it powered me through the Friday night as it was and it was actually kind of liberating not having to prepare dinner that night and having more time to myself.

So two big things happened on the water fast that were unusual and that I can remember very clearly.

One is that my poo became yellow. I read online that this was apparently the liver cleaning out the bile and putting it into my faeces. My poo was also like diarrhoea, and I took it as a sign that all was not well in my colon, but that at least the fast had worked at getting rid of some of the awful stuff in there.

When on a water fast, the whole body starts detoxing itself, or cleaning itself. You basically give the body the green light to do that since it’s not absorbing any nutrients and having to work at digesting food, so anything undigested sitting in your colon starts to get broken down; and in my case any bile that the liver doesn’t need any more gets excreted (or something like that anyway).

So, apart from the yellow stools, which I saw as a positive way of showing that my body was eliminating some ‘bad stuff’, some other things happened to me on the water fast.

For one, I became much more interested in finding out about things. I spent the whole day reading online articles and I found I had a lot more time in my day to do things other than eating. Once I had told my mind, ‘Look, you are not eating until this evening,’ it stopped nagging me for food and I could concentrate on other things.

I wasn’t obsessing about food or planning meals for the next week but instead I was pondering the deeper sides of my brain that had perhaps been untouched for some time.

The major downside I found on a water fast was that I didn’t sleep very well. It was almost as if my brain or my body didn’t require the sleep it usually needed as it was not processing lots of food, but this was not really ideal because it gives you a hard time sleeping and more time thinking and dreaming about food.

I ended up getting probably four hours sleep; about half what I usually get, so it was a pretty uncomfortable one night on the fast.

So let’s get on to the meditative part of the whole fast. On the second day in the evening I got in a very warm shower and for a moment it felt as if God was talking directly to me. He told me to stop trying to please other people and focus on myself.

It sounds barmy but it felt like an actual conversation with a higher being. Maybe it was just my subconscious talking to me, but in that moment I felt like I spoke to God.

Weird, innit?

Maybe it was the hot water or just that my unconscious mind was talking to me, but it felt like a bit of an epiphany if you like or a breakthrough.

Whether I’ve actually followed the advice I received that day is another thing, but any deep connection with your subconscious, or God if you believe it was that, can only be good for your whole being, so as a result I would recommend a water fast to other people.

It’s also good to deny your cravings at times, to know that you can go for an extended period of time without food and that being hungry is actually a good thing both mentally and physically.

The point is fasting can be a meditative experience and a bit of a clear-out for your body, although I wouldn’t advise it for an extended period of time, and I certainly wouldn’t advise it if you are doing lots of heavy exercise or have mental problems of some kind, or any huge obligations to fulfil.

Fasting for me is a spiritual thing and also a selfish act, I suppose. It means you are focusing entirely on yourself as you are, and you may find you don’t really have much to give the world or other people while you are fasting.

Fasting is done for you and you only.

You can probably get away with fasting for a weekend if you have nothing to do that weekend and you can just chill at home and want to expel a few toxins.

You might even have a chat with a higher power.

Further reading:

Fasting for Three days can Regenerate Entire Immune system – http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/2016/03/12/fasting-for-three-days-can-regenerate-entire-immune-system-study/

What happened to me on a 30-hour water fast

Why transcribing interviews is very intimate

You really catch every word a person is saying and you can get deep into their psyche as you have to relay every message they have onto the screen. You can spend 5 hours listening to a person and it’s possible to develop a very strong connection with that person just through listening to their words and their voice. They can make you laugh and share things with you that they maybe wouldn’t with other people. It’s not a connection but you can sometimes feel like you definitely know the person a bit more having listened to them for so long. Also in this information overload world we live in it can be hard to really listen to everything someone is saying and take it all in. With transcription you have to be present and literally hear every word. Also the words are going directly into your head with no outside distractions. That’s why transcribing can be very intimate.

Why transcribing interviews is very intimate

How to be a Football Writer Without a Degree in Journalism

Sure a degree in English can get you a long way, but as long as you read enough, you can be a football writer, but you have to know and love the beautiful game.

I’m assuming if you’re reading this you already love football, and you might enjoy writing, so why not put the two together?

Don’t be put off by the need for a degree in English – it’s not that fundamental. It shows you’ve invested in yourself, but very often grit, determination and a shit-load of knowledge can get you a long way.

Instead of pondering over it, try writing an article straight away.

You definitely want it to be published and not just sit on your computer, so why not submit it to a reputable website?  You could even get noticed and picked up to work for another site and for paid work, although in the early days you should just look at improving your writing skills.

Give Me Sport.com is often looking for new writers and has a very good online apprenticeship scheme where you submit articles and if they are good enough you get approved to write for the site.

It has a pretty strong fan-base and has good links to social media, so your work can be seen by potentially millions of people.

  1. When drafting an article, write it in Microsoft Word. This will enable you to spell check your work as you go, read it back and make sure it flows correctly. So important is spelling and punctuation, so make sure you Google all the names of players and teams if you are unsure.
  2. Use the spell-check on Word to make sure your commas are in the right places. This is really the fundamental of being a good writer.
  3. Next up is the passion and the knowledge. You need to have the knowledge in your brain and the passion for writing and football to put these words into practice. It’s no good really if you’re a writer of poetry or a rugby fan and you start trying to write about football. If you don’t know the essence of the game then your words will just be lost.
  4. Write one page of shit on any football subject you know something about. Get to a point where the words flow onto the page. It helps if you can type fast, so learn to touch type. You don’t want to be sitting there typing each key individually.
  5. Write for free at first – don’t expect to be paid for your work. If you’re good, you’ll produce good articles which will be picked up and you’ll eventually make money from it. You shouldn’t enter football journalism expecting to be very rich, you should do it because you have something to say and have an expert knowledge of football, and maybe don’t want a ‘boss’.
  6. Accept direction. Very often you will start working for an editor, so take on-board anything the editor has to say, especially with regards to your work. If he’s not happy with your work and lets you know, try not to take it to heart. Learn from his input and produce better articles.
  7. Know that writing is something that improves with practice. Like anything in life, nobody is born great. Mozart wasn’t born knowing how to play the piano, he simply learnt how to play it and then practiced and practiced until he was the best classical musician in history.
  8. Read other people’s work. If you have a genuine passion for football you’ll be doing this any way, but read editorials on the best football sites such as The Guardian and BBC Football. There’s a reason why these journalists work for the big sites, because their work is good. You can learn from them by their writing style and also develop your football knowledge at the same time.
  9. Try not to write lengthy paragraphs. Information is easier to digest if it’s in shorter sentences. Make sure you read your article back to yourself – even out loud – to check that it flows well and gets across the points you want to say.
  10. Sometimes it makes sense to not jump straight in with an article and instead write a draft on paper. A catchy headline and a few bullet points about what you want to say can easily turn into a 500-750 word article with a bit of work.
  11. Watch football games. This might seem obvious but you really need to see with your own eyes what you are writing about. You can’t just read online articles and palm off other people’s insights as your own. It helps if you enjoy watching football and can regularly watch games either on TV or even better in person at the match.
  12. Have a notepad with you at all times. This is so you can jot down your new ideas and add to existing ones, and you can use your notepad when writing your first draft.
  13. Don’t get discouraged. If football writing really is for you then you will enjoy it and get good at it. If your first article doesn’t get approved, write another one. If your first ten articles don’t get approved, keep going. Eventually one will get through. Like anything in life, determination and perserverance are the keys to success. Nothing is handed to you on a plate.
How to be a Football Writer Without a Degree in Journalism