About Elaine Swift

So who is Elaine Swift?

I’ve always loved writing. I love working with words: finding the right words, playing with them, finding alternatives. Words are powerful. Good writing can convey so much. Well chosen words can communicate thoughts, ideas and intentions clearly and succinctly. Bad writing on the other hand, leads to misunderstanding and miscommunication. In business that can spell disaster.

In fact, I love words so much that I gave up my job as Head of Press and PR for a world-famous camera brand, so that I could write full-time.

I hate bad grammar, jargon, woolly copy and lazy buzzwords and phrases. After a claim like that, I have to make doubly sure I live up to it!

As well as creating copy from scratch, I’m also happy to work with existing copy that isn’t quite saying what you want. Perhaps you get copy that has been translated from another language. I can make sure it works for you.

My experience

After 18 years looking after PR for Nikon UK, the last four as Head of Press and PR, I decided it was time to do the thing I’d always loved most about my job – writing.

Written work

I handled most of Nikon’s publicity material – anything from advertorial features and supplements in general interest and specialist photography titles, direct mailers to trade and customers, to customer newsletters and website content. And of course press releases.

Because cameras are complicated beasts, I’m used to taking technical copy and writing for a non-technical audience.

I’m a big fan of simplicity in copy. Business buzzwords may sound impressive, but if your audience doesn’t understand them, you’ll lose their attention.

I’ve worked closely with designers and had to edit copy to fit their layouts. At Nikon, copy would often come from Japan or Nikon’s European headquarters in Holland. It wasn’t quite right for the UK press and needed to be rewritten.

These are the kind of challenges I love. Because of this and because I love grammar too (well someone has to!) I have developed good editing and proofreading skills.

PR

I’ve also worked on some fun PR campaigns, some of which you can read about in Highlights.

I’ve organised press launches and press trips as well as large-scale events such as the Nikon Press Awards.