By October 15, 2014 Read More →

Word to the Wise – improve your writing

We started this new Word to the Wise series last month with a couple of home working photographers sharing their tips for professional pictures.

This month we take a look at words, and ways to improve your writing. Technical writer Claire Yeomans explains how to find some unusual characters on your computer, while VA Catherine Poole has a suggestion if you find it difficult to express yourself in writing.

Word to the Wise - improve your writing - Claire Yeomans, Author Ink

Claire says: ‘Punctuation can be a thing of beauty. It’s the cupcake equivalent of cream cheese icing on a sentence – without it, the whole thing is dry, flat and doesn’t really make a lot of sense.

Sadly, some truly lovely punctuation marks have fallen out of fashion but you can still access them with just a little bit of digging on a Windows PC or a Mac. Often, if you’re using an application such as Word or Excel, there’s an option to Insert Symbol, so you can browse characters until your heart’s content. Otherwise, you can access them via your operating system:

On a PC, you need the Character Map. Click the Start button and type Character Map into the Search box and open it from there.

On a Mac, you need the Character Viewer. This is often lurking as an icon in the menu bar but if not, you can enable it in System Preferences; choose Keyboard then Input Sources and select Show input menu in the menu bar.

It’s well worth taking the time to browse!’

Claire is a freelance technical writer living in Hampshire. She specialises in software documentation and can usually be found working from her shed in the garden.

work from home secrets

Word to the Wise - improve your writing - Catherine Poole, VA

Catherine says: ‘Struggling to get that blog started? Intelligent transcription can help with the process…

If you’ve got your own business, chances are you want to try and position yourself as an expert in your field, and one of the best ways to do this is to write a blog.

But what if you’re one of those people who struggle with the writing process and you’re finding yourself stuck at the first hurdle?

Perhaps you’re better at articulating yourself verbally and can talk for hours about what you do and how you can help people.

If that’s the case, did you know that intelligent transcription can help improve your writing by taking out the ums, ers, hesitations and repetitions from your recorded words? I would suggest using your smartphone to dictate your thoughts, and a specialist can then transcribe and edit the results into a blog post that’s ready to go.’

Catherine helps creative people re-purpose and add value to their audio and video content with intelligent transcription, proofreading, editing and project support.

work from home secrets

Do you have any other tricks that help you improve your writing? We’d love to hear from you.

And if you’d like to share your own expertise in an area that will benefit home workers, just let us know.

Posted in: Technology

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