An online devotionals for writers
Write my answer plainly on tablets, so that a runner can carry the correct message to others. (Habakkuk 2:2, NLT)
Ad copy on billboards presents an interesting writing dilemma. You don’t want to distract the driver who is speeding by at 70 miles an hour, but you want your message to be clear.
That’s why six words is considered to be the limit for an effective billboard message (that and large, large letters). A driver can grasp a six-word message in seconds.
What surprised me, as I studied ways to write better headlines, ad copy, and subject lines, is that billboards are not new. In Bible times, it was common to post a message on large clay tablets in public places – in large characters – so that people passing by could see it.
This was particularly useful when the message was urgent. In 600 B.C., God told the prophet Habakkuk to “Write my answer plainly on tablets” (Habakkuk 2:2, NLT) so that the people of Judah could use the information and prepare for a coming invasion.
How your readers use a headline or a message or a bit of ad copy is up to them. My job as a writer is to make it clear and plain so the reader can take it and use it … even when he’s in a hurry.
Sometimes, in six words or less.
Make your message plain.
I want my writing to be useful, especially when I need to communicate to readers who are in a hurry. Show me how to write plainly and clearly.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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