Good writing is made up of many elements. You need great content, clear headings, plain words, and engaging layout. But one thing that’s often overlooked is style. Style is the art of keeping all the details consistent — from spelling and punctuation to quotations and numbers.
Style means getting everything lined up and in order. Image by 6277974 / CCO
To style your words the right way (and the same way every time) you need a good style guide. We’ve just updated ours. It’s concise but comprehensive advice for anyone who writes at work.
What’s in our style guide
The Write Style Guide tells you things like:
how to use punctuation marks
which words to capitalise
when to use numerals and when to spell out numbers as words
We’ve changed our style guide quite a lot since our last printing 4 years ago. You’ll find more advice, better examples, and links to online tools that will help you do complex things quickly and simply.
For example, we’ve added sections on:
macrons (those little punctuation marks that show long vowels in te reo Māori)
greetings and farewells
names of places and organisations
copyright and Creative Commons.
Among other things, we’ve also added more advice on how to:
use italics to differentiate between print and web publications
handle names with irregular capitalisation (iPod, eBay)
use respectful language, such as gender-neutral job titles and appropriate pronouns
write descriptive headings and meaningful hyperlink text
make your words plain, concise, and active.
The Write Style Guide is an essential writing tool for anyone who writes at work. Even if you’re ‘just’ writing emails!