The Art of Words

Pay Attention to Your

Keep your primary keywords in mind and use them
artfully and often. Turn on your SpellChecker and check your copy before
you publish. Be personal, specific and cultivate your own style. Avoid
jargon unless it is vital to your meaning; remember who your audience
is. Vary your adjectives and listen to the beat of your words. Read them
out loud and change anything that makes you stumble. Keep it short.
Respect your sources and link, link, link.

There are plenty more guidelines to help you write copy for the Internet (including some I’ve written –
see my resource links in Beauty Online), but to me this subject really gets
interesting when you consciously use language to reinforce your values
and reflect the integrity of what you want to say.

If you want to promote peace, for example, lay down the violent
metaphors. To reinforce a connection with the natural world, plant words
that evoke the senses and sing the beauty of nature; avoid mechanistic
terms and abstractions.

When you want to promote interaction, ask questions and leave space for
reflection; cultivate listening. When your desire is to develop
connection and trust, always assume the best and consciously soften any
aggression that sneaks into your speech. Listen more than you write.
Love the ones you’re with.

Own your words. They’re yours, right there in print. Make sure they
reflect what you mean to say. Words have power and they can have grace;
let the ones you use carry both.