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Quick editorial tips to ease the way


  1. One space between sentences. We know your typing teacher told you two, but for the purposes of layout, one is enough.
  2. One thought per paragraph. Longer paragraphs appear to take up entire columns when dropped into a layout.
  3. Numbers one through nine are spelled out. At 10, they turn into numerals.
  4. When you use “that,” read the sentence again and imagine it without it. Chances are that you don’t need it.
  5. Don’t be afraid to use contractions. Again, we’re not formal. Contractions help your writing sound conversational, i.e. it makes your “voice” actually sound like one. Marketing writing isn’t academic writing, after all.
  6. Space and attention are limited, so get right to it. And remember the Five W’s — Who, What, When, Where and Why. The first sentence, the “lede,” should tell your reader exactly what to expect from the story without history.
  7. End-of-the-sentence punctuation and commas go inside quotation marks.
  8. Use commas respectfully — they really aren’t the punctuation for every situation. Sentences do not require several sprinkled about for effect.
  9. When you start chaining together prepositional phrases at the end of sentences, make sure you really need them.
  10. Use the ellipsis and dash sparingly. Ellipsis (…) indicates omitted words. The dash ( — ) indicates an abrupt change or sets off a phrase in a sentence already overpopulated with commas.

  

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