Beth Cook is a dating coach and throws private dating events for San Francisco’s most awesome and unattached. She also writes and draws about her own dating experiences. Want advice? Have advice? Send her an email.

Last week I wrote about things that you should remove from your online profile—subtle things that give people reason to easily dismiss you. Now you're probably thinking, what on earth SHOULD be in an online profile?

This week I'm going to share what works, what attracts, and what will get you those shiny, sparkly messages in your inbox.

1. Be lighthearted.
This is the most important tip I can give you. Everyone in the universe is attracted to people who are fun, positive and carefree. Even if you're terrified that you won't find someone to have a baby with by your 40th birthday or you're certain that no woman will ever like you enough to be your girlfriend, you must keep things light. Don't let fear, desperation and loneliness sneak into your profile (or, for that matter, rear its ugly head on a date).

2. Write outside of the box.
This isn't English class. You don't have to answer the exact questions each online dating form poses. If you don't read or watch TV, write about something else in the favorite books and shows section. Write about what you do like, what you are passionate about. It's a hell of a lot more attractive than saying "I don't really read much."

3. Flaunt your uniqueness.
Have you volunteered in Tanzania? Do you eat tomatoes like apples? We're all a bit different; write about what makes you special.

4. Tell stories.
There is nothing more boring than a list of shit you like. You eat Mexican food and like sunny days? Yeah, so does everybody else. Tell stories about yourself that illustrate what kind of person you are and what you're interested in. Have fun with this. A little creativity will really make you stand out from the crowd.

5. Show your sense of humor.
This is easier said than done. Notice what kinds of things make your friends laugh and infuse a little bit of that humor into your profile. Notice I said "a little bit" (as in just a couple of things). A friend wrote in his profile, "I have enough sense not to post a shirtless photo of myself in my bathroom mirror," and gals ate it up. He said it is still the number one thing people mention in messages to him.

That seems like enough for now (I don’t want to overwhelm you). To be continued... In the meantime, add these elements to your profile and you'll have men and women wooing you—or at least not ignoring you. Happy writing and good luck out there!

Photo by Don Hankins