Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Adventures in Copywriting #423

One of the secrets to writing anything is to read it out loud.

How the words appear in your head are very different to how they sound when somebody's reading them out loud - so it's a lazy writer indeed who doesn't check his 'readability' by saying it loud and proud before he submits a manuscript.

Sometimes, however, reading something out loud just isn't possible. Not without getting some funny stares, anyway.

In these circumstances, a trick many writers use is to read their work in their head - in somebody else's voice.

Yes, that's right. Imagine somebody else is reading your work and it's easier to spot fluffy verbiage and stray punctuation. It's almost as effective as reading what you wrote out loud yourself.

Sitting in a cubicle in a busy office, I'm often reduced to 'reading' my work in my head. And when I do? It's almost always Morgan Freeman's voice I use to narrate things.

Do you think I need to start paying him royalties?


Sarah said...

Hehehe... brilliant. It's about as bad as me. I'm so bad at proofreading, I need to do a better job of it.

There's this one avatar I have that says "I subconsciously narrate my entire life in third person in a British accent." Oh so true. I swear, I was born in the wrong country because for as long as I can remember, I've thought in a British accent. ;)

Coffee Bean said...

Miss Smartie Pants is quite talented with that British accent that she does NOT keep in her head, by the way.

You should go check out my post today on the Righteous Buzz on domestic terrorism.

Sarah said...

Haha, I do try. I like studying accents. They stick with me far better than languages do, and are much more interesting.