Sunday, September 26, 2010

Nicely Uninteresting

There's a cancer lurking in your writing. Miniature tumors that blunt your prose and eat at your credibility.

They are words like interesting, great, nice, good and better.

These are a special case of needless words, and if you want your writing to have any force or weight whatsoever, you must ruthlessly eliminate them.

These words are placeholders. They are wastes of space.

A practical solution: put together a list of these words, use the "find/replace" function in your word processing program and systematically weed them out. Choose a more effective word, or simply eliminate the word entirely.

These words are the written equivalent of litter. Don't let them clutter up your writing.