The local church that I’m a part of, updated its statement of doctrine and practices. Had the church’s beliefs changed? No, but the growth of our church body and the changes in society made the “update” necessary. They found that in order for consistency of teaching and unity amongst our church that stating our beliefs in writing was crucial. Otherwise, how would all the leaders and volunteers who come from all different backgrounds know with certainty what the church’s stance is or how to address certain subjects that, until recently, weren’t an issue.
In the same way, it is vital that you update your magazine’s style guide and Writer’s Guidelines from time to time. These are not set-in-stone documents. They live and breathe just as your magazine does. As you fine-tune your audience, address important topics that your readership may be struggling with, and keep up with ever-changing words and technology, your style guide and Writer’s Guidelines need to keep up too.
While the main text may not change, you don’t want your guidelines to still ask writer’s to fax the manuscript when you actually want it emailed.
Do you have a style guide that writers and editors can reference in order to know how to handle certain text in a uniform way?
These two documents are a way of making sure your writers and editors have the tools they need to help create a consistent magazine that is right for your specific audience.
Check out these links for more information and free samples: