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Copy Editing Copywriting Proofreading Spelling and Grammar

Can you start a sentence with a conjunction?

“You must not start a sentence with a conjunction.” That has been the mantra of many an exasperated English teacher, especially since the oiks started getting state education. Any pupil brave, daft or naive enough to raise a hand and ask “Why?” would receive some explanation along the lines of “Because it is said.” So […]

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Copywriting Digital Marketing

Seek Perfection and Ye Shall Find … Eventually

Perfection. It does exist, in certain realms. Think of the piston in an engine sized precisely to fit in its cylinder. The evolution of the shark. A hole in one (or 18 of them in a single round). The arrangement of the studs on a Lego brick. They are measurably, objectively and provably impossible to […]

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Copy Editing Copywriting Long Reads Proofreading Spelling and Grammar

Our changing language: are editors doomèd?

An article by David Shariatmadari in the Guardian has inspired a bit of a buzz these past few days. It’s about the mutability of language, and how the quest for perfect English is a forlorn one. Read “Why it’s time to stop worrying about the decline of the English language” here (it’ll only take about […]

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Copy Editing Copywriting Proofreading Spelling and Grammar

Using “a” or “an” before an abbreviation

Should we say “an NHS doctor” or “a NHS doctor”? There are two schools of thought on this subject: “vocalisation of the abbreviation” and “vocalisation of the first word”. Abbreviation verbalised By this rule, if the abbreviation starts with a letter that starts with a vowel when vocalised, the article used is “an”; if it […]

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Copywriting Digital Marketing

I love reading copywriting blogs

I love reading copywriting blogs. I even said it in the title. Especially the ones that use short sentences. One sentence to a paragraph. One word to a sentence. (No. I wouldn’t read that.) Because copywriting is about paring down, not padding out. Everybody knows that. Time is precious. But sometimes I wonder What isn’t […]

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Copy Editing Copywriting Digital Marketing Long Reads

Which ranking factors are affected by copywriting?

Because everybody wants their website to rank highly on Google, the SEO industry is now as important to companies as traditional marketing and PR always were. The boundaries are so blurred that most companies in one of these sectors usually seek to have expertise in the other two. To rank highly is to appear on […]

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Copy Editing Copywriting Spelling and Grammar

Companies, teams and organisations: singular or plural?

A subject that never goes away is whether organisations should be treated as singulars or plurals. That is, whether we should say: Tesco is the UK’s largest retail company or Tesco are the UK’s largest retail company In this example, it seems pretty straightforward. The first reads more naturally and makes more sense. There’s no […]