Names, Names, Names

The last few days’ dictations have been brutal, just brutal. It's the kind where every successive utterance gets progressively more annoying and tedious. When I analyzed just what the problem was, it seemed to me that these particular drills had a bunch of names and exhibit numbers given in rapid succession. Today’s blog entry will focus on the dreaded names category. I’ll save the numbers talk for a different day.

My plan of action for tackling names is outlined in the article found here. I highly recommend reading that if this concept is new to you. That helpful article is found at, a great resource where you can find free steno drills, practice tools, inspiration, and myriad information on all things a court reporting student could ever want to know.

After writing them out once or twice to make sure I have them correct in the transcript, here's some of the names and how I’d shorten them. The idea is to capture as much of the name as you can, phonetically speaking, while keeping it readable and easy to stroke.

Dr. DR-, Mr. MR-, Mrs. SMR-, Ms. SM-
Sandra SA*RND, Sandra Colston SKO*LS,
Mrs. Colston SMRO*LS, Ms. Colston SMO*LS
Chuck KH*UK, Colston KO*LS
Chuck Colston KHO*LS, Mr. Colston MRO*LS
Michael Williams MAO*IMZ, Mike Williams M*IMZ
(shorter name gets the shorter outline)
Michael MAO*IBLG, Mike MAO*IK, Williams W*IMZ

This way of briefing names is something I’m trying to add to my court reporting arsenal, although it takes some getting used to. Hopefully if I practice this concept hard enough I will begin to be able to brief names on the fly.