Begin the writing process by first taking time to think about the following:
- Content. Organize content by developing a logical and cohesive information outline.
- Style. Keep in mind your group’s attributes (excellence, innovation, intelligence, etc…), and voice (confident, optimistic, direct, etc…).
- Audience. Are you writing for ACS members, the public, elementary or high school students or another audience altogether? Each audience type has different priorities, needs, and expectations of our organization.
Consider the following writing principles to ensure that your content is helpful, quickly understood, and appropriate for the user:
- Be active. Write in the active voice. “We implemented the new system” is more confident, direct, and dynamic than the passive, “The new system was implemented.”
- Be direct. Use simple, straightforward language. Avoid using a long word when a short one will do. Be plainspoken and direct.
- Be concise. Don’t use too many adjectives. Choose your modifiers judiciously.
- Be brief. Copy that is too long or covers too many topics is difficult to understand. Use section titles, headlines, and subheads to divide information into easily digestible pieces.