Writing for the Web
People don’t read web sites: they scan them. You have only a few seconds to get their attention and direct them to the information they are looking for. If they find it, they expect solid content delivered clearly and efficiently. If they don’t find information quickly or if they encounter boggy writing, they will leave and probably not come back. It is the technical web designer’s job to build in good navigation and provide clean page design, but you, as a writer, can support the web designer’s goals with excellent web writing.
This two-day workshop focuses on writing to meet the needs of a web audience. It will help you develop an effective web writing style that avoids common pitfalls. It will show you how to break up and organize information to prevent information overload and allow your audience to “grab and go.”
Understanding how web users read
Writing fresh and satisfying content
Repurposing print documents for the web
Avoiding “blah-blah” text, “marketese,” and fluff
Using personas and scenarios to fine-tune your site
Writing to help readers find what they are looking for
Knowing when to break traditional rules of grammar and style
Checking and improving your web site’s usability
Achieving consistency with a web style guide
Designing for diversity and special audiences
- Anyone who writes or adapts material for the web or intranet
- Anyone who wants insight into the difference between traditional writing on paper and writing for the web
- Anyone who wants to practise reducing wordiness and fog
Melanie Sexton, Ph.D., is an editor, technical writer, and instructor, with more than 20 years experience teaching University courses and workshops in grammar and writing skills. As technical writer and editor, she has designed on-line help systems for software applications, edited technical documentation suites, written style guides and standards, and managed a variety of writing projects. She also happens to be profoundly deaf and has designed and delivered workshops on deafness and disability issues for both government and private-sector clients.
“I appreciated all the use of examples and Web pages (good or bad).”
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