OUR THOUGHTS, IDEAS, AND TIPS

Mono-tasking

Focusing on a particular project is crucial to succeeding, whether it's writing an email, report or strategic planning. Multitasking tempts us every day and threatens to take away this focus. Often, there's so much to do that it seems impossible to get all of the...

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Writing work instructions that work

You may be too young to remember MASH. But I can’t discuss work instructions without mentioning the episode when Hawkeye and Trapper are following instructions for defusing a bomb. Here’s a short clip: Every day we deal with many types of work instructions. Some...

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When you’re the office proofreader

Do your colleagues and employees rely on your writing and editing skills? Are you frequently asked to look over others’ writing or give projects a “quick look”? Congratulations! Your co-workers obviously respect and admire your writing skills and keen eye for small...

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How to edit your post or comment on Facebook

We all know that awful feeling when, immediately after you’ve posted a carefully crafted Facebook status update, you notice “see” instead of “sew” or “live” instead of “love.” (It’s particularly embarrassing if you’re posting for your writing business’s Facebook...

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Common confusion: Peek, peak, & pique

The words peek, peak, and pique are homonyms that are often mistaken for one another. Here’s a quick reminder of these words’ meanings and how to use them correctly. Peek can be a verb meaning to look quickly or a noun meaning a quick look.    I peeked through...

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What’s the problem with run-on sentences?

Business and technical writing are done for the purpose of understanding, and run-on sentences are just plain difficult to understand. It’s hard to know where one sentence ends and the next one begins. (Run-on sentences are also known as compound sentences or fused...

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Email subject lines

Writing a subject line to an email is a bit like coming up with a title: it needs to be short, spark interest, and tell your readers what to expect. While subject lines don’t need to be as creative or striking, they can be just as daunting to write. Writing email...

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Common confusion: dawned & donned

You may come across the phrase “It donned on me” from time to time. This is, however, incorrect. The right verb to use in this expression is “dawn.” Don means to wear or put on. For example, “Stephen donned his favorite straw hat while walking along the pier.” Dawn,...

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