I am working on:
my next AP style blog post.
Aug 19, 2011, 11:31 CDT
- Member Type(s): Expert
- Title:Senior Account Executive
- Area of Expertise:Writing, Grammar, Journalism, PR
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Wednesday, December 5, 2012, 1:07 PM
Writing has always been a passion of mine — from scribbling pretend news stories when I was a child to penning blog posts and bylines as a communications professional. As in sports or music, practice makes perfect.
But we’re all human, so mistakes can certainly occur, especially in this digital age when it seems our keyboards are moving faster than the news cycles. The race to quickly publish is heated, but before distributing, writing needs thorough proofreading. After all, content is currency in public relations, and any grammar flops can disgrace circulated content almost faster than pushing it live.
The Associated Press Stylebook provides a right-hand guide for all writers and answers many questions about proper prose. Following are some common blunders in written content, with the AP Stylebook’s rules to help keep them straight.
- Compound modifiers. A compound modifier is when two or more words that express a single concept precede a noun. Use a hyphen to link all the words in the compound, except the adverb very and all adverbs ending in –ly. The high-performing dashboard displays results instantaneously. The happy-go-lucky boy did what he wanted this afternoon. The first-of-its-kind technology creates easy-to-use solutions.
Monday, August 13, 2012, 1:50 PM
In a few short weeks, students across the country will settle into classrooms for another hopefully productive school year. While they might sport the latest fashion and technology trends to stay hip in the halls, here are some back-to-school-related terms from the Associated Press Stylebook to help us writers make the grade:
- academic departments: Lowercase except for words that are proper nouns or adjectives. The marketing department; the department of English.
To read more, visit www.inkhouse.net/fifteen-ap-style-rules-....
Friday, July 20, 2012, 12:18 PM
As the world casts its eyes on London for the 2012 Summer Olympics, writers can go for the gold in their prose.
The Associated Press (AP) has published its editorial style guide for the Summer Games, compiling essential terms, spellings and definitions for the XXX Olympiad. Opening Friday, July 27, the London Games will feature 26 sports and 39 disciplines with about 10,500 athletes vying for a total of 2,100 gold, silver and bronze medals.
When watching U.S. swimmers Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte’s aquatic quests or Team USA’s vaults in gymnastics, writers can follow AP’s Olympic terms and usage:
- Olympics or Olympic Games: Always capitalized. There are Summer Olympics and Winter Olympics, or Summer Games and Winter Games.
To read more, visit www.inkhouse.net/sixteen-ap-style-tips-f....
Friday, June 15, 2012, 1:10 PM
Words, when cobbled into descriptive sentences, can create some of the most striking works of art. These verses wield the power to convey detailed messages, paint vivid images and absorb all readers—while informing audiences.
Mark Ragan, CEO of Ragan Communications (the leading publisher of corporate communications, public relations and leadership development), recently hosted a writing webinar that discussed how communicators can sharpen their prose. At the heart of communications is storytelling, and in order to successfully express narratives, clear writing is the vehicle that turns tangled thoughts into dramatic tales.
Unblemished writing has never been so important during the digital age as newsrooms dwindle and blogs flourish. As a result, brand journalism has spawned, enabling companies to act as media outlets, report their stories and generate engaging content that they can propagate across the Web.
Before putting pen to paper or finger to keyboard, Ragan offered the following seven tips for crisp writing:
- Clarity—above all. Simple, clear language delivers stories best. Writers must say what they mean and birth narratives that not only convey personalization, but do so in a conversational tone.
To read more, visit www.inkhouse.net/seven-ingredients-for-c....
Friday, June 8, 2012, 1:03 PM
The 2012 Associated Press Stylebook has arrived, containing more than 270 new and updated entries in fashion, broadcast and social media that will help writers perfect their prose.
Before thumbing through the nearly 500-page news writing guide, here are five important updates to the revised edition:
- Hopefully. At the center of debate is AP’s updated definition of “hopefully.” The news service no longer objects to using hopefully as a floating sentence adverb, as in Hopefully, the Boston Celtics will advance to the NBA Finals, allowing the modern usage meaning of it is hoped. Linguists, however, argue that hopefully is one word that waters down writing. They say it’s insignificant and doesn’t strengthen script, while other critics say “it’s a free-floating modifier that isn’t attached to the verb of the sentence, but rather describes a speaker’s attitudes.” Other floating modifiers—sadly, mercifully, thankfully, or frankly—are common in English grammar and haven’t sparked discussion.
To read more, visit www.inkhouse.net/five-updates-to-the-201....