Creating Theme Copy that Truly Has Voice Lizabeth A. Walsh, MJE
Theme copy attributesJust like regular writing, theme copy has traitsVoiceOrganizationIdeasConventions
Voice (the tone or attitude) Clear Tied to the words of the theme Connected to the design of the book
Organization Thoughts need to flow logically from one to the next Transitions are important Introduction, body, conclusion Opening, divisions, closing
Ideas What is important enough to go in here? Where do we find ideas for theme-related copy? Should someone be quoted? If so, who? Remember to be concise. Don’t use three words if two will do.
Conventions AP style still rules the roost. Punctuation, spelling, grammar- even more important when copy is in larger type and mistakes are easier to see. Pick a person* and stick to it. (*see voice) 1st person- I, me, my, mine, we, our, ours 2nd person- you, your, yours, you’re 3rd person- students, people, he, she, it, his, hers, him, her, they, them, their, theirs, they’re
Note graphicelementson coverExterior caseblocks part ofmessage and altersits meaningSuffix “less” altersmeaningHandwritten fontDeconstructedbold all-caps type
Note graphicelementson coverReversed type withtextured fontOrange & redblocks of colorTiled photosdepicting spiritedstudentsSans serif, all captypeAngled, pattern lines
How to get there… Theme should be specific to yourschool, your year, and your students. Use a thesaurus & an idiom dictionary Play with (sort) words and phrases Some will be for sidebars, others for theme, a few for both Brainstorm actual copy using thosewords and phrases that that stood out as“most important concepts.”
Practice Theme: It’s About Time Thesaurus http://thesaurus.com Idiom Dictionary (print versions work best) Short list of Outstanding Concepts Create five sentences of theme copy
All materials presented…Remain the property and copyright of the variousowners of the original works.These yearbook samples were presented atBALFOUR workshops for the benefit of theirclients and customers.Please do not alter these presentations.Use of these shows is intended only for individualadviser-to-staff classroom teaching, not forpublication or reproduction in any form for anytype of presentation at a conference, camp,convention, or gathering of multiple schools’ staffs.