Volume 1: City Builders Write! Essential Guides


Scribe Technical’s writing guides are meant for subject matter experts in government, industry, or non-profits who want to build their writing skills and be a more effective professional.

Be heard! These guides are packed with principles and techniques you can apply to all the documents you prepare, and include exercises, practice cases, and resources you can use to continually improve.

1. Persuasive Writing for Planners

Learning to write persuasively is a common challenge for city-building practitioners. This guide will help you generate support for your great urban ideas.

In five short chapters, you will be introduced to the principles, techniques, and tips you need to write persuasively. It will help you understand why some people are persuasive and others are not, understand the value of persuasive writing, and enable you to deliver clear, polished documents that generate support and keep projects moving forward. Also included are exercises and a practice case for you to try on your own.

This product is available as a downloadable PDF. First published in 2021; updated in 2023.

2. Plain Language for Planners

To be effective in their fields, all community- and city-builders need to be able to communicate their ideas and advice in plain language. This guide will help you write clear reports, plans, studies, proposals, memos and other documents that you prepare every day.

In four short chapters, you’ll be introduced to techniques you can use to ensure your professional advice is understood and used by decision makers, clients, colleagues, members of the public, and others. It will help you understand the value of plain language for even the most complex, technical topics, and coach you on how to write the clear, accurate, and inclusive documents your readers expect. Also included are exercises for you to try on your own, a discussion of practical tools you can use to support your writing process, and a plain language checklist you can keep on your desktop to stay on track.

This product is available as a downloadable PDF. First published in 2022; updated in 2023.

3. Storytelling for Planners

How do you write professional documents that meet all the requirements, but also reflect your unique, expert voice and perspective? What if you could express your complex ideas and analysis in a way that’s more exciting than “just the facts”, but still advance your project?

This writing guide shows urban planners and other community-building professionals how to tell a story that’s relevant, interesting, and clear – in their own style.

As a planner, you’ve chosen an exciting profession, focused on the future liveability of our communities and cities. Learning to write your documents with a compelling storyline will help you achieve your vision and objectives – and get positive feedback! But while a storyline is something we all intuitively understand, it can be difficult to apply the techniques of storytelling to our business documents.

In five short chapters, this guide provides planners with the storytelling techniques they need to write a clear, logical, and easy-to-read story that readers will follow and understand. Along with practice exercises, this writing guide covers:

  • Understanding the structure behind a great story
  • How to launch a great planning story, with a template or without
  • Techniques for providing a logical progression of ideas and creating flow
  • Addressing impediments that interrupt a great story
  • Things to look for when reviewing your drafts.

This product is available as a downloadable PDF. First published in 2023.