Be a Better Writer
It doesn’t take much to improve your writing.
Here are 4 easy ways to strengthen your fiction or nonfiction and become a better writer instantly:
1. Comb through each sentence in the manuscript, looking for places where you’ve repeated a word several times.
For example, I receive press releases and reviews of new books via email every week.
It’s surprising how often the word “book” can be repeated within a short, 250 to 500-word review or press release.
A strong manuscript doesn’t overuse words unless they’re repeated to create rhythm or to emphasize something (as in the case of a children’s picture book, for example).
2. Look for lenthy sentences that muddle your meaning.
If a sentence is too long, it becomes difficult for the reader to remember what you’re talking about.
Aim for shorter sentences, as a rule.
3. Eliminate the word “that” whenever possible.
How do you know when you can cut “that”?
When the sentence makes sense without “that”, of course.
4. Write as short and simply as possible.
When you write for publication, often you’ll need to adhere to strict word limits.
Almost anything you write can be revised and shortened, yet I have writers all the time who tell me, “I know I need to get the word count down on this article. But I can’t find anything I can cut.”
My answer to that is, “You’re just being lazy! Go back over every sentence looking for words and phrases you can trim.”
Here’s an example of a sentence that can easily be cut from 14 words to just 10 words.
14 words: Here are a few tips to follow in order to edit your manuscript effectively.
10 words: Here are a few tips for effectively editing your manuscript.
See how easy it was to smooth out that sentence and cut a few words?
It isn’t difficult to trim most manuscripts.
Follow these tips and you’ll produce stronger, shorter, less clunky articles and stories right away.
P.S. Improve your overall writing skills in just 15 days!
Learn more at www.15daystobetterwriting.com.