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Newsletter 2020

I usually find myself writing this newsletter in a holiday mood, looking back on the year’s trials and triumphs, getting ready to take a week or two off and recharge before another go around the roundabout. It’s usually a jocular round-up of high-points, full of my Dad-jokes.
This year’s newsletter is a bit different.


Spelling

Remember the limitations of spellcheck systems. They can’t spot misused homophones. Below are some of the words most commonly confused: affect (verb): to influence, to…


Difficult words

The following words and phrases are frequently misused: biggest, fastest, etc are used when comparing one thing with many others, bigger, faster, etc when comparing…


Books, films, trade names, etc

In journalism, never use italics for titles of books, reports, newspapers, magazines, plays, films, albums, paintings one-off broadcasts, serials and series. But always use them…


Grammar

Collective nouns Most groups, companies, organisations, etc take a singular verb: Boots is opening a new branch; the committee has reached a decision; the Government…


Welsh spellings

Prefer Welsh spellings such as Caernarfon and Conwy to old-fashioned anglicised versions (Caernarvon, Conway) – although there are exceptions, such as Cardiff not Caerdydd. More…


Wars

It is the first world war, second world war (avoid writing “before the war” or “after the war” when you mean the second world war)….


Religion

The archbishop of Cardiff, Glasgow, Liverpool, St Andrew’s, Southwark and Westminster: it is not normally necessary to say Roman Catholic (as there is no Anglican…


People

If in doubt, refer to the NUJ reporting guidelines. Gender Do not use male terms generically. For instance, fire brigades employ firefighters. Generally, use spokesman…


Addresses and telephone numbers

Spell out Street, Avenue, etc: Mr Morris of Otley Road, Headingley. Don’t abbreviate county names where a recognised abbreviation exists: thousands saw the planes in…