- Paperback: 528 pages
- Publisher: New Riders; 1 edition (January 21, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0735711518
- ISBN-13: 978-0735711518
- Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 1.1 x 8.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 14 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,130,733 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Hot Text: Web Writing that Works 1st Edition
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From Library Journal
There is no shortage of material on web site usability (see Computer Media, LJ 3/1/02). Hot Text shines in its comprehensive coverage of online writing. One will find information on XML and writing for database-driven sites; creating FAQs, blogs and newsletters, and online r sum s; and becoming a web writer or editor. Although it does not break any new ground, Back to the User is a solid summary of current thought on the "user-centered" approach, covering both writing and design. It largely focuses on business sites, with additional information on e-commerce and branding. Both titles are appropriate for public libraries. Shaping Web Usability, while more academic, also addresses specific issues such as designing for older adults and handheld devices. Recommended for larger public and academic institutions.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Hot Text examines good writing practices and discusses their application to and implementation on the web. -- Dr. Jean A. Pratt, Business Information Systems, Utah State University
Inspiring, authoritative, fun, and personalHot Text is an instant classic. -- Rich Coulombre, Principal, The Support Group, Needham, Massachusetts
This is the best web writing book around, with excellent coverage of history, theory, and application. -- Muriel Zimmerman, Coordinator, Programs in Technical Communication, University of California, Santa Barbara
Warm, informative, conversational, inspiring, and honest, this book gave me great ideas and models without feeling like a lecture. -- Colombe Leland, Web writer, newspaper editor, Albuquerque, New Mexico
Why is online writing so bad? Probably because books like this haven't been available until now. Buy it. Read it. -- Seth Godin, Author of Survival is Not Enough, Permission Marketing, and Unleashing the Idea Virus
Top customer reviews
I do think, however, that the book is written in a style that is rather confusing and unappealing. I think this comes from the authors trying to be all things to all people.
But this book hits on topics that the lesser books such as Net Words fail to cover. In their zest to get to market and gain new clients, those authors write lots of puff and little meat.
Hot Text offers the meat. So if you only buy one book on online copywriting and usability, make it this one. It doesn't cover everything but it gives you the basic background and the knowledge to do a good job on creating a useful Web site.
This book is suited for beginners or more experienced people who write for the web or would like to. But it is better suited for those with very little experience or who want a reminder of what works and what doesn't.
Those with a lot of experience will quickly do a read-through and pick up a few good ideas and be done with it. But even that is worth the cost of the book.
I highly recommend this book to those people who need the information the most.
Susanna K. Hutcheson
Owner and Executive Copy Director
The book is at its best in the section aptly titled "Write Like a Human Being." Here, you'll find dozens of practical tips and techniques for Web copywriting. From "Shorten That Text" to "Write Menus That Mean Something," the Prices not only tell you how it's done, but demonstrate it in "before and after" samples. And each tip is evaluated in an "Audience Fit" grid that assesses how well it suits various types of site visitors. These five chapters alone (covering nearly 200 pages) are worth the price of the book.
Hot Text is much more than a style guide. Another 150 pages discuss how to write for the various genres found on the Web--help text, FAQs, marketing copy, PR and news releases, 'zines, e-mail newsletters and (yes) Weblogs.
Throughout, the book is extensively supported by a wealth of useful references (many of them available online) and pertinent callout quotations. And just when you think there couldn't be any more good stuff, you'll find helpful information on how to find a job as a Web copywriter.
I have two major quibbles with Hot Text. For a book that emphasizes clarity of expression, it begins on an odd foot. After a brief introduction to some general principles of Web-writing, it jumps into a discussion of object-oriented writing that is bewildering to novices. The normally crisp text slows to a snail's pace as they wax a little too theoretical. Don't get me wrong--this is important stuff, but it is the least successful part of the book.
Second, as an information architect and Web writer, I'm intimately aware of the strong connection between information architecture, user interface, menus and text. Attempting to draw clear boundaries between them is well-nigh impossible.
Unfortunately, the Prices cross those lines too often by assigning IA tasks--for example, menu structuring and user personas--to the copy writer. While I'm certain that many Web writers are indeed saddled with such chores due to budget limitations, IA activities are best left to those with the appropriate training and experience. Yet "information architecture" isn't even included in the index! The Prices' readers would be better served by a chapter or two on the makeup of Web project teams and the central role of collaboration in site development.
Keep these in mind and Hot Text will find itself a well-thumbed addition to your bookshelf.
1. Detailed instruction for every conceivable page of Web site content.
2. Super tips and insight on PR content and dealing with editors and publishers.
3. The history of HTML (very cool!)
4. All sorts of useful style tips.
5. How to write your resume.
6. How to get a job.
7. Hundreds of online resources.
The writing (needless to say?)is clear, concise, and conversational. Had the book been written in 2006 instead of 2002, I'm sure the authors would have thrown in much more about blogs. Other than that, the material seems to be up to date.
This book is worth every penny!
Most recent customer reviews
This book examines the subject of writing for the web, and how it differs from writing for hard-copy media.Read more