When I start writing for someone, I need to glimpse inside their head to work out who they are, who they are writing for and how they want to sound.

To do that, I either sit down with a cuppa for a chat — which is my favourite way to do it — or I send them a writing brief, like this one.

Now, if you’re doing the writing yourself, going through this brief will push you to think about what to write before you start. Keeping the template at your side as you write helps you keep focus, and using the brief as you edit makes sure keeps everything consistent.

On my write your own website course, we use this template as a starting point for longer-form writing, say blogs, case studies and even newsletters, then we work together and peer review to make sure everyone is sticking to the approach, tone, voice and plan they’d set for themselves.

Proofreader, copy-writer and copy-editor

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