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JanuaryFourteen

Page history last edited by PBworks 16 years, 6 months ago

Where I work

 

What I do

I write copy (words). Well, that's not true. I edit words (copy), or sometimes I simply rearrange them. I "tweak" them mostly. I also "traffic workflow," which means I tell grown men and women what to do and how long it should take them to do it. Sometimes, I remind them when they haven't finished on time, but usually I'm too buried to notice. That's called management, and I'm a rookie. The writers (there are four of them) can pretty much come and go as they please. It's a great job, at least that's what they tell me. I believe them, because for a time, I was one of them. I don't see them all that much, because I attend meetings, where we strategize about synergy, me and the "people with spray-painted parking spaces." Some of them earn seven-figure incomes. I do not. My income is decidedly five figures.

 

My mission

To be an innovator, a trailblazer, a pioneer. To stare adversity in the face, snort a wad of snot, and ... um, create a copy (word) style guide for HSN (which was once called Home Shopping Network, until it became an uncool branding practice). Why me? Well, because I'm a writer, or at least I work with writers, and even writers must have guidelines, especially when they work for $1.6 billion (annual revenue) corporations. Our language is open to interpretation, yes, but there is structure. In corporate communications, we adhere to some rules and fail to abide by others. For instance, we know when to say "ensure" and when to say "insure." But the dictionary does not alone guide us. Especially in this, the digital age, when "@" can acceptably replace "at" and "." fills in for "dot" and "i" means something close to "I" but is much cooler, especially when squeezed together with a noun beginning with a consonant (iPhone, iPod, iPoop).

 

But how?

By stealing, of course. Legal stealing. You know, citation. I call it "paying homage" -- and I always pronounce it hahm-edge, knowing oh-mahj is the fancy way. I am not fancy. I only write words (copy). As a solid guide, I will refer to two books: Wired Style (new school) and the Associated Press Stylebook (old school).

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