Production 512: The 5 Disciplines Of Production – Part 1: Writing

Prod512 Logo 400pxAfter completing this month’s video, I sat and watched it all the way through, as I usually do, looking for stupid mistakes and such because there’s almost always one or two. I was pleased when I didn’t spot any, but then realized that there was one big one: I get a bit preachy. Maybe it’s my passion on the subject but regardless, my apologies up front. Please don’t take it personally. I guess it has more to do with reading so many scripts and hearing so much otherwise good production that falls apart due to poor writing. It really doesn’t have to be that way. Good grammar, punctuation and clarity of thought should be the standard for every serious producer, but sadly it just isn’t. I can’t pretend to be an angel of good writing; I make my share of stupid mistakes, but language is our main profession, written or spoken.

I don’t want to hear arguments about “sounding street” or “being down-home authentic” in various formats. “Down-home” doesn’t mean “dumb as a shovel,” it simply means “open and friendly.” When your spots and promos hit the air, your voice and/or production becomes the voice of the station. Your advertiser clients want to make sure that you’re appealing to everybody in the target demo, regardless of their educational level. Good grammar never offends, but bad grammar turns the better educated listener off, and they’re the folks the client really wants because, in the main, they have more disposable income. It might seem like a pretty fine point (finer than frog hair as my “down-home” daddy would say), but excellent production demands a frightening amount of attention to detail.

OK…enough of my “lowering expectations” for this post. Let’s get to it!

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