G is for grace
How to use grace in content
Writing about sensitive subjects or breaking bad news is difficult. Our general advice on brevity may be less relevant here.
This is all about grace in content writing.
Your writing should seek to soften the blow, to appear sensitive and professional. Striking the right note and tone takes priority over being concise, avoiding extra words or using flowery language.
When you need to convey a message with compassion or provide comfort to readers, summarising feelings or context too neatly does not work. It can come across as far too cold or thoughtless.
But conversely it can be detrimental to dress things up too much. If your writing does not seem natural you will come across as contrived or inauthentic.
Don’t pretend to be something you are not. Warmth and emotion cut through most barriers. Never patronise, never lecture and never make it about yourself or the organisation you represent unless you or they are directly involved.
Writing on sensitive issues affords a little more room for a stream-of-consciousness feel than most other contexts. Don’t take the freedom too far though. Clarity and intent are still key, but try to emphasise humanity.
The standard guideline about placing essential pieces of information or takeaways at the top of your work can also be relaxed in this type of writing.
Point to what you’re going to be talking about early on, but allow yourself to get to your points slowly. This type of writing should not be in a rush to set out some figures or fire out a bullet point.
Keep it human, genuine and understated.