How Style Guides Affect Profits— An Apple, Inc. Case Study

by Lynn S. Schwebach Business in the 21st century requires almost all employees at all levels to produce either in-house or external communications—or both. Time spent writing and editing dramatically affects workers’ productivity, and, what many companies fail to realize, the company’s profitability. Nearly everyone writing an e-mail hesitates over capitalization, spelling and grammar questions. …

What are Style Guides and How do They Earn Readers?

by Lynn S. Schwebach Given any writing project, writers want to express themselves today—not tomorrow. They want to get the words down and move on without revising for grammar and usage. Add to that impatience, bad memories from grade school make us avoid checking grammar; style might be a topic we never learned. Yet bypassing …

Heidi Pitlor Shares Short Story Writing Tips

by Lynn S. Schwebach Sometimes writers think they’re flexing their creativity when they’re actually rehashing story lines. Because we work so insularly, we fail to notice changes in writing and the world around us. I learned that last Thursday at a workshop with Heidi Pitlor, series editor of “The Best American Short Stories” published by …

Boulder is Bravely Creative

  Some cities have an identity crisis, but Boulder, Colorado is not one of those cities. Boulder’s idiosyncratic nature becomes immediately apparent walking down its main commercial shopping district, Pearl Street Mall. The cobblestone street showcases street performers, visually interesting storefronts and equally interesting people. You might see someone dressed as Luke Skywalker or Jack Sparrow, …

Creative “Aha” Moments Arrive While Taking a Break

by Lynn S. Schwebach Problem solvers often describe having insights during unusual moments. Artists, scientists, computer programmers – probably every person regardless of occupation - has experienced this phenomenon. While away from work on vacation, walking the dog, running and sleeping our brains unconsciously go into overdrive. We might “think” we’ve stopped working on a …

“V” Lives his Life Without Creative Limits

h by Lynn S. Schwebach Laughing so hard that he found it difficult to talk, Nguyen Vu Tung described Christmas eve in Hanoi as a throng of young, thin Vietnamese men dressed as Santa Claus, driving on motorbikes, sometimes two Santas per bike, a large sack of toys thrown across one Santa’s back. Year round, …