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when typed or written out, is
one-eight-six-oh, two-nine-one, nine-four-seven-six.
You can see how long line really is when numbers are spelled out. Then, after you’re ready to print your final draft, convert words back to numbers.
Write for ear, not eye. Construct short, conversational sentences, with natural breaks for taking a breath. This is especially helpful to narrators when they voice technical or medical copy, which contains large, complicated, and difficult-to-pronounce terms.
Read your copy out loud, just as you intend voice talent to read it, and time it. Then adjust your copy accordingly for timing.
Try to write in active voice, not passive voice. This is a passive construction: “When writing a script, be sure you’re saying some exciting things, or else you’ll be losing attention of listener.” Instead, use active voice, structured something like this: “When you write a script, say something exciting, or you’ll lose listener’s attention.” Active voice is more conversational and easier for ear and mind to follow.
© Peter Drew, February 2004
Peter Drew, a freelance voice-over talent and copywriter/producer, is heard on radio and television stations, corporate presentations, web sites, and messages-on-hold across the U.S and other countries. To hear samples of his work or to send an email regarding this article, please visit www.peterdrewvo.com.