Many words have optional spellings: several versions are correct. Which one will you use?
Online or on-line? web or Web? realise or realize?
In such cases, consistency rules. Your personal preference is irrelevant.
Somewhere in your (client's) organisation is an inhouse Style Guide. It's a publication that nobody reads except the people in Corporate Communications. Most likely you'll find a copy there, although someone did give you one when you were first engaged.
Listed there (or should be) are the definitive spellings you must use. Otherwise chaos rules as everyone makes it up as they go along.
What's wrong with chaos? Well, it unsettles your readers, and tortures you, the writer, with numerous fiddly little choices.
Oh dear, what if you can't find a Style Guide and nobody seems to care anyway? Use the dictionary approved by Corporate Communications... and in extremis, use your own dictionary.
Jan 25, 2010 • Posted by Lucy Smith
I’m actually considering writing my own style guide for my business. That way, it can satisfy my own pedantry, make my writing consistent, and should I outsource in the future, I won’t have to spend ages picking through and editing copy before sending it back to the client.
Jan 25, 2010 • Posted by rachel
Excellent plan, Lucy! Larger clients may insist on your using theirs, mind you.
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