A language question: practise or practice?

Published on by in Blog, Language.

Dear Tiffany…

Dear Tiffany,

I would appreciate it if you could settle a dispute I am having with my colleagues, over the use of ‘practice’ as a noun and ‘practise’ as a verb.

To give you two examples: “With maintaining a routine of daily practice…” and: “ I would recommend regular practice…”

I am saying that both of these are correct, because ‘practice’ is being used as a noun. However, my colleagues do not agree, saying it should be ‘practise’, as this is something that should be done, and is therefore a verb. Which is the correct form?

– Frustrated

Dear Frustrated,

You are...

Why you need rock-solid copy more than paid search

Published on by in Blog, Copywriting.

A couple of years ago, I wrote crap.

Truth. My professional life was largely dominated by creating web copy that I really, really disliked, but that got the job done really, really well. It was peppered with synonyms, keywords, and cautious-but-very-deliberate repetition.

It wasn’t link-bait, but it wasn’t beautiful.

If I’m honest, the crap copy was fun to create, because I was writing puzzles – using my right brain to generate original content that relied on my left brain to be strategic enough to rank highly. But I was aware that, in the grand scheme, it sucked.

Then Google...

Why does he talk like that? Seven language ‘lessons’ from The Donald

Published on by in Blog, Language.

©actionsports via 123RF

Donald Trump, the uninvited guest at the 2016 election, has taken everything we thought we knew about running in a presidential campaign and turned it on its head. But for me as a copywriter, one of the most interesting things about The Donald isn’t his fluffy hair, his tiny fingers or his orange visage – it’s the way he speaks*.

If you listen and watch closely, you’ll hear and see explosive noun phrases, self-interruptions, departures from the theme, flashes of memory, odd side remarks; in a nutshell, the disordered language of a person with...

How much of copywriting is writing?

Published on by in Blog, Copywriting.

Contrary to what you might believe, not even half of the copywriting job is the actual writing. If I were forced to apply a ratio, I’d say only 40% of creating copy is actually putting words onto a page. The magic bullet that differentiates the successful copywriters from the less successful ones is the other 60%.

So if you’ve ever interviewed a copywriter, employed a copywriter, worked alongside a copywriter, or wanted to be a copywriter, you should know that:

1. Copywriting is problem solving

Long before the words start flowing, the copywriter is thinking about, and trying...

Book review: Recognising Postnatal Depression: A Handbook for Mothers

Published on by in Blog, Motherhood, Reviews.

As I began to page through this book, just the first few chapters, I kept having to stop and verbalise out loud how much I wish we’d had a copy when I started to experience symptoms of PND.

But, even in the early days, I was too far gone to read it myself. That’s why I think this book should be required reading for any husband who suspects that his wife isn’t 100%. Or any granny, friend, sister…

As the authors say, upfront:

“This book may not be for you but you may want to read it anyway...