Plain English

Champagne Glasses
Feb 21, 2017
Amanda O'Donovan


If recent world events have you reaching for the bottle, teeter over to and marvel at the astonishing revelation that there are 3,000 alcohol-related words in the English language. Although English speakers often act like we invented the word booze, lexicographer Susie Dent is quick to correct. It was, in fact, the Dutch who coined […]

Snowy mountain peaks with lake
Mar 15, 2016
Amanda O'Donovan


I was born in a country where rain is a common topic of conversation-a natural and frequent occurrence that unites, and often defines, an entire nation. I now live in a country where snow and ice dominate much of our landscape throughout the winter months. When I left England, although blissfully unaware of it at the time, my snow […]

Girl on a boat with a sunhat
Oct 04, 2011
Amanda O'Donovan

Lost in Translation?

Communication breakdowns can happen anytime, anywhere-often without a language barrier in sight. Translation traps exist in even the most innocent of exchanges. Caught in the confusion, your message could either sink without trace or become misinterpreted and misrepresented. Instead of basking in accolades you’ll […]

Corporate writing tools
Feb 02, 2011
Amanda O'Donovan

How to Write Good Content

Today’s blog post appears thanks to the very talented Jay Eckert, founder of Parachute Design, a graphic design studio that creates beautiful hand-made websites, logos and materials for print. Not only is Jay a brilliant designer, but he also has a great eye for content. His blog today contains some very sound advice […]

Boy shouting into microphone
Jan 21, 2011
Amanda O'Donovan

Please Don’t Shout

Sitting in a doctor’s waiting room the other day, I found myself becoming increasingly irritated by an unnecessarily large collection of instructions. Alongside the questionable assortment of obscure magazines, and the throng of way-too-graphic posters, I was assaulted by a number of barked commands, stuck to various surfaces […]

Filing cabinet and work boots
Jun 07, 2010
Amanda O'Donovan
1 Comment

Say it Like You Mean it

After a very annoying incident with a favourite pair of shoes this weekend, I made a mercy dash to the repairers in the mall to restore them to their former glory. Against my better judgment, I left my husband temporarily unattended in a men’s clothing store, buying shorts that looked identical in every way to […]