In this week’s readings I resonated with the concept of practicing concise writing. Often in the professional workplace, the more to the point we are, the better. In a fast-past moving work, the idea of saving time, space, and more often than not—money, is ideal. So in the sprit of brevity, I will make this blog post terse.
1. Writing as though you are an SAT vocabulary prep book does more harm than good
Instead of ‘expeditious’ use ‘fast’; don’t use ‘cognizant,’ instead, use ‘aware’. With people having low literacy levels, the simpler the word the better.
2. Cut the fluff
Words like ‘very,’ ‘extremely,’ ‘really,’ or any word used to emphasize the following word is not needed. Chances are you a. don’t need it the word to emphasize it, or b. the word you’re trying to emphasize isn’t the best word you could use. Every character in your writing counts. Cutting fluff saves the reader time and makes your writing more clear.
Concisely crafted writing takes a certain level of dedication, time, and practice. In almost every piece you write, there are words that can be changed, cut, and moved around. In addition the suggestions from the article here are a few more I have learned during my time as professional writing student.
3. Buzzwords are key
In the professional world it is rare that people will have the time to read every word you write. Using well-known ‘buzzwords’ make it easier for people to scan the writing and still pick up on the overall message.
4. Know your audience
Depending on who you’re writing to can alter your tone and formality. Often, people enjoy reading an inviting and engaging voice—but beware of the differences in writing for a more professional audience. Bonus: stay away from colloquial language—when using local jargon, a non-local audience member can feel taken out of the writing if they don’t know the local slang.
5. Red Pens> Editing on screen
Even though we live in a digital savvy world, there are parts of us that are still old school. When editing, do yourself a favor and print out a copy. Using a red pen, start reading your work backwards from the last sentence to the first. Taking yourself out of the natural flow the words will help catch easily missed mistakes.
Image Source: http://howtobemoreconcise.blogspot.com