8 steps to more concise writing

Ever find yourself going on and on and on and on and … this will help prevent that habit.

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1.Remove redundancy

Avoid double-teaming terms like “a period of one week,” “end result,” “free gift,” and “personal opinion.” Watch for phrases that echo the quality in question: “oval in shape,” “larger in size,” “shorter in duration,” and the like. Omit redundant words that are already implied as part of an abbreviated term, such as machine in “ATM machine.”

2. Reduce phrases to words

Replace a descriptive phrase following a noun with a one-word adjective that precedes the noun. For example, “People who are experienced at traveling know better than to label their luggage,” can be revised to, “Experienced travelers know better than to label their luggage.”

A modifying phrase, similarly, can be reduced to a simple adverb. For instance, “Sympathizing with her concerns, he nodded in response to her complaint,” is more concisely expressed as, “He nodded sympathetically in response to her complaint.”

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