Developing a house style

Why you need a “house” style By “house” style I mean a writing or editorial style that a company or organization will aim to apply to all the documents and communications it produces. The same can perhaps apply to an individual author who is writing a series of books, guides, or articles. The main reasons … Continue reading Developing a house style

5 key steps for writing perfect emails

Today life is a bit of a rush, especially on the work front and mistakes are understandable but a hazard. Failure to check your work and proofread your business emails can result in all sorts of problems, and errors in emails can make your communications appear unprofessional and careless. But there are steps that you … Continue reading 5 key steps for writing perfect emails

What proofreaders do not routinely do

In an earlier blog I discussed what proofreaders would normally do as part of their duties. There I touched on aspects of writing and publication that proofreaders would not normally be involved in: copy-editing, copyright and permissions, indexing, literary appraisal, page design and layout, and rewriting. Many professional proofreaders have the skills to perform some … Continue reading What proofreaders do not routinely do

Tips for writers: Avoiding sexist and biased language: part 1

Sexist language refers to words, terms, or usages that discriminate against or exclude either of the sexes, and that assume maleness, or even femaleness is the standard. Despite many years of feminist campaigners and attempts to raise awareness of the use of sexist language, it still widely exists in modern life.

The dangers of failing to proofread

Put yourself in your readers’ shoes: how would you feel if you had received a document or publication from someone that contained numerous errors and inconsistencies? Even worse if you had paid good money for it. You would might possibly feel insulted that they could not be bothered to ensure their output was readable and free of errors.

How much will you charge me for proofreading?

Understandably I hear this from people enquiring how much I estimate the cost of a proofread will be from me. Unfortunately, some equate freelance with part-time or casual work undertaken, by someone who magically earns their main income elsewhere and can therefore be generous with their time and charge a minimal amount for it. Sadly, … Continue reading How much will you charge me for proofreading?

Authors’ quotations on writing: What do writers think of their craft?

I have discussed previously authors’ quotations about each other – sometimes derogatory – but how do they and others regard the craft of writing? Here are a few of the more humorous ones. “The covers of this book are too far apart.” (Ambrose Bierce) “That’s not writing, it’s typing.” (Truman Capote on Jack Kerouac) “Coleridge … Continue reading Authors’ quotations on writing: What do writers think of their craft?

Tips for writers: Writing reports part 3. How to present data

In part 1 of Writing reports I discussed the importance of creating a simple and appealing visual appearance using several techniques, and in part 2 I discussed consistency of style. In this final part I will discuss how to present data. Lack of space prevents a full analysis of the ways to present textual and … Continue reading Tips for writers: Writing reports part 3. How to present data

Levels of proofreading

You might be forgiven for thinking that proofreading is proofreading – there are no variances in style or intensity. The proofreader would read through for spelling, punctuation, capitalization, and other errors and inconsistencies and that is it. Well not quite – it depends on the authorship, readership,  and context, and where the writing will appear. … Continue reading Levels of proofreading