$20 Off a Class Ring! - Click for Code

Proofreading Guide for Your Announcement Order

 

To help you with questions you may have while composing your text, we've put together this list of the most common problems we see with announcement texts. (If you'd like information about your choices for our proofreading services, see this page.)

 

1. "Person Problem"


The most common error we see is that the text begins in third person (as though a 'third party' is speaking) and then changes to first person. This is not the kind of thing we can just "fix" based on your permission, because there are a number of possible ways to correct it. See below for an example of such an error, and three suggested corrections. Note that the third "correction," using the parent's names at the bottom as a signature, requires an extra line if there is to be a skipped line before the names.

Incorrect
 
Correction #1: Keep text in third person


Mr. and Mrs. Sample
are pleased to announce the
High School Graduation
of our daughter
Mary Jean Sample
from Sample School
We invite you to join us
for a Celebration
Saturday, May 9, 2019 at 1:00 p.m.
at our home
123 Main Street
Anywhere, Name of State

 

 


Mr. and Mrs. Sample
are pleased to announce the
High School Graduation
of their daughter
Mary Jean Sample
from Sample School
They invite you to join them
for an Celebration
Saturday, May 9, 2019 at 1:00 p.m.
at their home
123 Main Street
Anywhere, Name of State

 

Correction #2 Keep text in first person
 
Correction #3 Change text to first person with names below

We, Mr. and Mrs. Sample
are pleased to announce the
High School Graduation
of our daughter
Mary Jean Sample
from Sample School
We invite you to join us
for a Celebration
Saturday, May 9, 2019 at 1:00 p.m.
at our home
123 Main Street
Anywhere, Name of State
 


We are pleased to announce the
High School Graduation
of our daughter
Mary Jean Sample
from Sample School
We invite you to join us
for a Celebration
Saturday, May 9, 2019 at 1:00 p.m.
at our home
123 Main Street
Anywhere, Name of State
(skipped line)
Mr. and Mrs. So and So
 

 

2. "Date/Time Format" Inconsistency


The second common problem we see is inconsistency in the way the time, date, and year are written. On a formal announcement, they should be ALL written as numerals, or they should ALL be written out using words. The expressions "p.m." or "a.m." are only used with numerals. Likewise, the expressions "in the afternoon" or "in the evening" are only used when writing the time with words. (Note that five o’clock is “afternoon”… in fact, everything up until six o’clock is considered “afternoon” or “p.m.”) If the year is stated in the text as in "Class of 2019," it is not usually stated again when giving the date of the ceremony. See the examples below:

 

Incorrect
(Day and time are written in words, but year written using numerals)
 
Correct
(write it all out, or use all numerals)


on Saturday, the third of June, 2019
at one o'clock p.m.

 

on Saturday, the third of June
Two thousand and nineteen
at one o'clock in the afternoon

OR


on Saturday, June 3, 2019 at 1:00 p.m.

Incorrect
(Because the time is in numerals, the phrase
"in the evening" is not correct, and there should be no ordinal "th" when the year is used as part of the date.)
 
Correct
(use "p.m." and eliminate the ordinal, or write out
date & time in words)


on Saturday, May 10th, 2019
at 6:00 in the evening

 


on Saturday, May 10, 2019 at 6:00 p.m.

OR


on Saturday, the tenth of May
Two thousand and nineteen
at six o'clock in the evening

 

 

3. Incorrect use of "R.S.V.P."

Remember, "R.s.v.p. means "please respond," so stating the information as "Please R.s.v.p." is redundant. If your event is an Open House, it is not correct to ask for a response. See our etiquette page for more information about the difference between an Open House and a Graduation Party. When giving a date for a response, the year is omitted. (In case you are wondering, the use of upper and lower case with periods for "R.s.v.p." is quite acceptable, and it is recommended when the verse is printed in a script font. It keeps the all-capital letters from becoming a "tangled-up mess!").

 

4. Overuse of Capital Letters.

The tendency to capitalize the first letter of every line makes the text very difficult to decipher, since punctuation is not normally used at the end of lines.

The following should be capitalized:

  • Proper nouns
  • First word of a new sentence
  • Name of the event to which the recipient is being invited. (however, “a ceremony and celebration” is not usually capitalized) An example: Commencement Exercises
  • “Class of…” or “Senior Class” or “Graduating Class of…”
  • “The Class of…” “The Senior Class…” etc.
  • If the date is written out, only the “T” on the year is capitalized (“Two thousand”)
  • The words "High School" or "Graduation" are often capitalized.