Synaesthesia – tasting your words

While watching a TV programme recently I heard of a term that I had never heard of before: synaesthesia. Oxford Dictionary of English defines this as “the production of a sense impression relating to one sense or part of the body by stimulation of another sense or part of the body”. For instance, sights or … Continue reading Synaesthesia – tasting your words

Pen names and other authorship devices

A pen name, also known as a nom de plume, is an assumed name used by a writer instead of their own real name. It can also be a variant form of their real name and might be known only to the publisher or might be widely known. For example, Ruth Rendell, author of dozens … Continue reading Pen names and other authorship devices

Tips for writers: Using italics

Roman (that is upright type) is the standard text typeface, but for various reasons italic type (that is slanted to the right) is adopted. This is often to indicate some form of departure from normal text for the reader to interpret the word or words in a certain way. Some of the main uses of … Continue reading Tips for writers: Using italics

Tips for writers: Avoiding sexist and biased language: part 2

In the first part of this blog I discussed the widespread use of sexist language and reasons and methods used to avoid it. Here I will look at biased language and stereotypes. What is biased language? Biased language refers to words and phrases that can be considered hurtful, offensive, and prejudiced. Biased language includes expressions or terms that demean … Continue reading Tips for writers: Avoiding sexist and biased language: part 2

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

In the first part of this blog I will discuss the occurrence and the effect of using sexist language and in part 2 I will go on to the wider issues of using stereotypes and biased language. Meaning and occurrence Sexist language refers to words, terms, or usages that discriminate against or exclude either of … Continue reading Tips for writers: Avoiding sexist and biased language: part 1

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 … Continue reading The dangers of failing to proofread

Tips on how to avoid some pitfalls in writing

They say there is a book in each one of us waiting to be written. If that is true it is probably easier for some people than others to turn that into a published book. The first decision to take is about what to write. Tip 1: Write about what you know Not everyone can … Continue reading Tips on how to avoid some pitfalls in writing

Tips for writers: Collective nouns and mass nouns

At first glance by the layperson the terms collective nouns and mass nouns might appear to be the same, but there are differences. Collective nouns denote a group of individuals, such as crew or family, and the noun can be used with singular verbs or plural verbs. In Britain it is generally more usual for … Continue reading Tips for writers: Collective nouns and mass nouns

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?

Why proofreading should be part of your marketing strategy

You might think that proofreading is an outdated process that belongs to an era before digital content and communications, when everything was printed and proofs were intensely inspected by eagle-eyed proofreaders wielding red pens. That would be a wrong assumption as proofreading is needed now as much as ever before, perhaps even more so with … Continue reading Why proofreading should be part of your marketing strategy