With is not a conjunction


Using ‘with’ at the start of a sentence has traditionally been regarded as ‘weak’ writing. Writers also need to be wary about joining sentences by using ‘with’, as: ‘With is not a conjunction’. That bold statement is a section heading in the Australian Government Style Manual. However, many people do use ‘with’ in this [...]

With is not a conjunction2021-05-27T14:04:57+10:00

Editing in a tone of voice


'Will a document editor change my tone of voice?' This is a valid question, as an organisation’s written tone of voice and style are important. After all, they represent its brand. Writing style also varies markedly by sector. The language and style of a start-up business selling baby products will be altogether different to [...]

Editing in a tone of voice2021-03-17T16:21:22+10:00

Your crisis is our emergency


We've been giving plenty of thought lately to how we can keep things simple. And that's important because our clients turn to us for document editing in a hurry, before they hit ‘send’. Here’s how we do it: A website without pop-up windows blocking your view No login or password to remember, even on our [...]

Your crisis is our emergency2021-02-12T15:44:55+10:00

Hank is the lead for a multi-author report


Hank has co-authored a report with a bunch of colleagues. Perhaps you do this, too? Hank is pretty confident in his writing style. But… Veronica is verbose Amelia is abrupt Harry from HR writes a mass of jargon and acronyms. It’s all too clear that several people have written the report; it lacks consistency [...]

Hank is the lead for a multi-author report2021-03-22T10:06:50+10:00

The Hon. Michael Kirby’s Ten Rules of Plain Language


It was a pleasure to hear the Hon. Michael Kirby AC CMG at the 26TEN breakfast in Hobart today, where he stepped us through the commandments for clearer writing. He is the Patron of Clarity, an international association promoting plain legal language. We heard how a lawyer might say, "Help yourself to an orange," (and that [...]

The Hon. Michael Kirby’s Ten Rules of Plain Language2021-02-12T15:16:36+10:00

License or licence?


by Rajan Venkataraman Americans are different. You don’t have to be a keen observer of US politics – with its primaries and electoral college, with its government shutdowns and its tea party – to reach this conclusion. They speak a different language too. The first thing you notice, of course, is the [...]

License or licence?2017-05-02T05:33:25+10:00

An editor’s week


Variety is a significant pleasure for a business-document editor. Not only is variety stimulating, but the work that comes across our desks at Hit Send (or rather, across our screens) also provides a fascinating insight into local and overseas businesses, Tasmanian government policy, and plans for our State. Monday First up is the bimonthly Seafood Industry News. [...]

An editor’s week2017-04-26T07:19:18+10:00

The difference between proofreading and editing


As fairly few business people have used editors and proofreaders, I am often asked to define just what we do. Here are the basic distinctions between proofreading and editing: Proofreading This is a final check for errors, typos and formatting that's gone awry. We cross-check content lists with body copy, check headings are in a consistent [...]

The difference between proofreading and editing2021-02-19T15:17:04+10:00

Zag-zig and hop-hip


One of the wonderful laws of language that we know intuitively is the one that governs word order. It's called the rule of ablaut reduplication. Native English speakers have such an ear for it that it's highly unlikely they would ever get it wrong. This rule explains why we don't say zag-zig, or cross-criss, and rules out hop-hip dance. For those [...]

Zag-zig and hop-hip2016-12-18T09:18:57+10:00

Blogging for your business


This post was originally published on the Tourism Tribe digital hub.   Blogging as a part of your business marketing strategy is a little different from traditional journal or travel blogging. Finding the time and the inspiration can be tricky, so here are some tips from my experience and through talking to others. But [...]

Blogging for your business2016-12-08T04:12:10+10:00