Friday, June 20, 2008

Hot Text Web Writing That Works-- Jonathan and Lisa Price-- Review

Hot Text, Web Writing That Works by Jonathan and Lisa Price is a book about how to write for the internet. Writing on the internet is very different than writing in print. Print has a much higher resolution for lettering and is much easier to look at. Web pages are somewhat fuzzy and indistinct. People read 25% slower on the web than on the printed page.

Readers are also not very patient with websites. Most don't want to have scroll down through multiple screens. They want to read everything on the first screen most of the time. Long articles are often not appreciated.

Because it is harder to read, many people want to have their information up front. You need to summarize what you are writing about at the beginning not the end. You also need headings for your subjects which clearly describe what you are writing about.

The focus is on immediacy. Paragraphs need to be short and to the point. The authors give numerous examples of how to reduce the amount of verbiage while writing. The point is to shorten your words, tighten your paragraphs and arrange your headings so people can understand quickly what you are writing about.

In addition, unlike a printed page, a website page is viewed as an object. There are also images and links embedded in each page. Most people want to see images with their text illustrating what the website is about. Links should be short and easy to read. Also, long lists should be broken up into bullet points if possible.

The point of this book is to make your writing more readable and usable for the internet. The book focuses on business and marketing writing. How to write a proper faq, customer service page, checkout for credit cards, and design a blog are discussed.

This book will help you write cleaner copy and create clarity in your thinking when you are writing on the internet. I thought it was quite useful to read. I think you will too.


Andrew Clarke said...

If you enjoy reading fantasy, may I suggest one to try? "Outcasts Of Skagaray" is an action adventure fantasy. If you want to take a preview,there are two sample chapters on my website, and also on the site I would be delighted to hear your opinion of it.

Book Calendar said...

I rather like the feel of this. It reads like an Edda in a way or a classic barbarian tale. It has a historical feel to it like the feel of the cold north. There is a sense that this will be a tale about cunning overcoming strength.