Short sentences pack a wallop. But there are many ways to trim a sentence, and cutting the wrong words can undermine its meaning and power. In this video, look at different ways to rewrite a sentence so it "snaps": first by identifying low-value words, then by rearranging phrases to maintain flow, meaning, and strength.
- Let's be honest, sometimes you're writing to fill space.…A report needs to look impressively big,…a webpage feels too empty.…A client insists that more words means more importance.…And we've all been mis-trained…by grade school assignments like write at least two pages…about your summer vacation.…So there are times when such drawn out writing…is appropriate.…But in this course we're talking about impact,…about getting in quickly and making a strong impression.…Short punchy sentences are better for that.…
That means removing words,…specifically the ones that don't contribute to the sentence.…Words like really, very, or extremely are used to emphasize,…but they often do the opposite.…They make the reader wonder why the emphasis is needed.…Wait, let me put that another way.…They really make the reader wonder a lot…just why the emphasis is truly needed.…Hear the difference?…I think the first one works better.…Business writing is especially rich in meaningless words…like world-class and innovative.…
If something is innovative,…
- Paraphrase the goals of “write short, write clear, and write right.”
- Recall the strategy used to make long paragraphs easier to read.
- Identify the most-often portion of the page neglected by English-language readers.
- Determine which words to omit from writing.
- Explain why short paragraphs are easy to skim.
- Name two strategies to write more effectively.
- Identify examples of assonance.