EPISODE 6: BE CONSISTENT! Four Writing Practices Where You Need to Keep Things Uniform

Your writing needs to clearly communicate with your audience what it is that you are trying to say. Part of that process is demonstrating to readers your authority over your writing form.  While you want to show that you know what you’re writing about, you also want to demonstrate that you know what you’re doing as writer as a well.

Our new WritingandEditingTipsandTricks.com video—Be Consistent!: Four Writing Practices Where You Need to Keep Things Uniform—offers best practices that will help you craft a skilled and effective piece of work.

The four areas that Episode Six looks at are:

    • Words with Optional Spellings:
      • If you are using a word with optional spellings more than once in your piece, ensure that you use the same spelling choice consistently.
      • Many optional English language spellings are often either American or British in origin. Try to have all of your optional spelling choices either all American-based or all British-based.  Try not to mix the two styles up.
    • Punctuation Practices:
      • If there are options for punctuation practices, be consistent in your punctuation choices.
      • One example would be to consistently use either one space (a more commercial consideration) or two spaces (better for formal or academic work) following a period in a paragraph.
      • Another example would be to ensure that bulleted lists are uniform both in terms of the types of bullets used as well as with uniform spacing and layout.
    • Numerals vs Written Numbers
      • Write out numbers one through nine or ten (optional choice).
      • Use numerals for all numbers ten/10 or higher.
      • Always use written numbers when they begin a sentence.
    • Acronym Usage
      • Only provide an acronym if you are using the title more than once.
      • Type the full title when first used followed by the acronym in brackets.

Episode Seven/Part Two—Be Inconsistent!: Four Writing Practices Where You Need to Keep Changing Things Up—looks at when it’s important to stay inconsistent for a smooth, streamlined result.

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