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Should defined terms begin with a capital letter?
14 December 2018

Should defined terms begin with a capital letter?

Putting a capital letter at the beginning of a term that has been defined within a document is a technique sometimes used to identify these terms throughout the document. Does this technique help or hinder the reader?

How to avoid a word and brand clash
7 November 2018

How to avoid a word and brand clash

When you use outdated words, you not only risk misunderstanding, but you may inadvertently create a mismatch between your written communications and your brand. These words can also alienate your reader. Find out what words are 'in' and what words are 'out' in business writing.

How long does it take to write 1,000 words?
23 October 2018

How long does it take to write 1,000 words?

Do you consistently miss deadlines for reports and other written communications at work? There could be several reasons for this. You may have been given an unrealistic deadline or perhaps other more urgent jobs demanded your attention. Although there is not much you can do about these real-life scenarios, accurately estimating how much time you need, and then pacing yourself, will help you get to the finish line on time.

How to invigorate a stodgy report
27 September 2018

How to invigorate a stodgy report

Are your reports clear, concise and contemporary? Or does your writing tend to get bogged down in too many words? There are many ways to make your report easier and faster to read. This simple technique will make your writing more action-oriented and more concise. Find out how.

What's the difference between tense and voice in English?
9 September 2018

What's the difference between tense and voice in English?

Many people confuse tense with active and passive voice. This is because the way we construct a passive voice sentence sometimes makes it appear to be in the past tense. But tense and voice actually have two different purposes. 

Why do people say 'Pardon my French'?
28 August 2018

Why do people say 'Pardon my French'?

The term ‘pardon my French’ has been commonly used for the past 120 years or so to excuse the fact that you are about to swear or use offensive language. Do the French really swear more than anyone else? What did this phrase originally mean and how did it come about?

How to avoid embarrassing word blunders
13 August 2018

How to avoid embarrassing word blunders

Are you savvy or suave? Or both? Is your idea practical or practicable? English is a wonderfully flexible language full of foreign words, subtlety of meaning and quirky spelling. This means we have to keep our wits about us and not rely too heavily on the spell checker. Words that sound the same or similar is an area where many people trip up. 

 

Three quick tricks for reducing typos
27 July 2018

Three quick tricks for reducing typos

In our haste to meet a deadline we often either skip or rush the final stage of the writing process – checking our work for errors. Alternatively, we become so familiar with what we’ve written we no longer see the errors. Both these scenarios are common; we’ve all been there. If you find spotting errors challenging, try these three simple techniques.

Four tips for writing brilliant bulleted lists
16 July 2018

Four tips for writing brilliant bulleted lists

Often called ‘dot points’, bulleted lists can be used effectively in business writing to break up large slabs of text or to make information stand out. A well-structured list will make your report, email or other communication easier to read. But there are a few traps that could derail your list and your reader. Once aware of these traps, you can quickly get your list back on track.

Three quick ways to make your writing more concise
2 July 2018

Three quick ways to make your writing more concise

Your first draft of any written communication is likely to be wordier than it needs to be. This is normal. Even professional writers go back and refine their work to make it more concise. Small revisions can make a big impact, so at least one revision is always worth it. If you're under pressure, read on to find out three quick and effective editing tricks.