Writing Topics: blogs

When ‘badly’ doesn’t mean ‘urgently’; or, why we should all read our work through

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Much talk in the blogosphere recently about a lady, a professional writer, who, touting for business through Google ads, asked potential customers: ‘Need it written badly?’ Unsurprisingly, this attracted a lot of attention. Not a lot of it positive. The line may have been a kind of post-modern joke, but, if so, then it was […]

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How reading about paleolimnology can improve your writing

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I’ve been enjoying BLDGblog for a while, and if you’ve got a few minutes to spare, while eating your sandwich or sipping your coffee, I’d urge you to have a quick read. Its author, Geoff Manaugh, is a contributing editor to Wired Magazine, and I like the blog because of its sharp take on architecture, […]

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Corpspeak alert: “solutions” still going strong

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[This entry originally appeared on Clare Lynch’s blog, goodcopybadcopy] Everyone seems to hate the word solutions, but marketers still can’t help wheeling it out at any opportunity – as these three recent arrivals in my inbox show. Low cost? Great! Flexible? Great! But what exactly are you advertising? Wow, thanks! I’ve had that jar containing […]

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What are your personal oxymorons? (Yeah, yeah, “oxymora” for you pedants out there)

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[This entry originally appeared on Clare Lynch’s blog, goodcopybadcopy] Reading another blogger’s post on irony and paradox, I was reminded of a particular type of paradox: the oxymoron. An oxymoron is defined as “a figure of speech in which apparently contradictory terms appear in conjunction”. The most commonly cited example seems to be Tennyson’s “faith […]

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Punctuation: why do we need it anyway?

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[This entry originally appeared on Clare Lynch’s blog, goodcopybadcopy] Today, I’m delighted to feature a guest post by fellow copywriter Sarah Turner. As you’ll see, she’s a definitely a woman after my own heart . . .

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Guest post on the Word Sell blog: solutions

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[This entry originally appeared on Clare Lynch’s blog, goodcopybadcopy] I’ve got a guest post today on Brad Shorr’s brilliant Word Sell blog. So please head over there to read my latest rant on everyone’s favourite piece of business-speak. Yes, it’s the dreaded word “solutions” . . .

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The rules you follow that make smart people think less of you

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[This entry originally appeared on Clare Lynch’s blog, goodcopybadcopy] A new post over at the Daily Writing Tips blog discusses the contentious issue of paragraph length (gosh, we writers really are a sad bunch). You know, that old rule drilled into us at school about never, ever, writing a paragraph that’s less than three sentences […]

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What’s missing?

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[This entry originally appeared on Clare Lynch’s blog, goodcopybadcopy] I recently blogged about the perils of assuming too much knowledge on behalf of your readers (see “Why you should write for grandmothers and Martians”). Today I came across an example of writing where the most fundamental question in the reader’s mind was, very confusingly, left […]

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