This blog shares some of our thoughts about plain language, and the latest discussions about plain English and clear design in New Zealand, and around the world.

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07 July 2011

'So you think you can write about my specialist topic?'

Clients often want to know how we can help in the writing process — especially when we’re not subject matter experts.

Not experts in your topic

Subject matter experts are, of course, the ones we rely on to ensure that what we write is accurate. Our expertise lies in:
  • extracting the information – from interviews, background reading, even watching you in action
  • structuring the information
  • writing the information in clear terms so that other people can understand your messages.
One of the key benefits we bring is a fresh eye to the information. We’re not afraid to ask ‘why?’ or even ‘so what?’ and we’ll tell you when something isn’t clear enough. Our aim is to produce the text you would have written if you’d had the time and the plain English skills.

And you might be surprised what we know a bit about. Out writing team has worked with myriad subjects and vastly different clients.

But experts in writing about any topic

We use a clearly defined writing process that includes research and planning, writing and editing, with consultation along the way. We’ll consider the purpose and audience and create an outline of your document. We’ll check the structure with you. Then we’ll provide the content in more detail, usually over several iterations, crafting as we go. The aim is for you to feel confident your material is accurately conveyed and uses your voice and style.

Making sure the document is readable and accessible — and connects with the intended audience — is fundamental. We’ll be the advocate for the reader. It’s often hard for people with a lot of information and expertise at their disposal to get to the real heart of what they need to say. We’ll ask all the questions your reader might ask, so together we can refine the content and tell your story clearly.

And ready to help you any time

Our process is tried and true, and calling on our writing team can be a godsend when deadlines are looming. In the end, the writing still belongs to you — you can decide to accept or reject what we come up with.

We think we can write — but you be the judge.

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