New website for the Writing Room at St Andrews

A few weeks ago the web team had a visit from Jonathan Falla, a local award-winning author and course leader for both the Creative Writing Summer School and now The Writing Room at St Andrews. It was about the latter that he came to see us about.

The Writing Room at St Andrews is an online creative writing course that is part of the University’s Open Association programme which begins in October and runs through to March the following year. Jonathan wanted a new ‘brochure’ website to help promote the course.

Having listened to Jonathan’s requirements, and having sketched out a rough page structure Jonathan went off and wrote the text for the site. Ah! What a refreshing difference working with a professional writer: it was short, clear and submitted exactly when he said it would be.

The Writing Room at St Andrews

The Writing Room at St Andrews

We decided very early on that we’d use WordPress, using the Twenty Twelve responsive design because that’s the platform we use now for this kind of site, and Jonathan already has experience of using WordPress. It made sense as we just wanted to get the site up-and-running as soon as possible.

This has possibly been one of the fastest multi-page websites I’ve worked on, taking a little over four hours to complete, including image selection and editing. I’m pleased with how the site is looking, it’s been a fun short project to work on and I definitely, definitely recommend using a professional writer when requiring well-written copy… more of that please.

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Learn about writing for the web

The University’s Staff Development team is providing a course on writing for the web. It will take place 19 November from 1.15 pm to 4.30 pm at Seminar Rooms 3 and 4, David Russell Apartments.

If you produce content for the University website, you may want to attend this course. Here is why, according to the course details:

When writing for the Web your content needs to be concise, scannable and objective. Users find it harder to read from a screen than paper so they scan the page looking for what they want – you probably do it too – so as Web content creators we need to write our content in such a way that we help users get what they want as quickly as possible.

This short course will help you understand:

  • The benefits of good writing for the Web
  • Why the Web is different
  • The importance of structured content
  • How to write for the Web
  • How to easily maintain and revise content

This is part two of a two module course with the first module being Clear, Concise & Comprehensive Writing. Participants can register for either or both of the modules running on 19 November. Lunch will be provided for those who have registered for both modules.

Book a place online now if this sounds like the course for you.

Gareth has been busy working on this. I was going to be involved, but I can’t as it turns out I will be at T44U in Dublin when the course is taking place.