Techniques to Cure Wordiness

grammar-manA writer’s greatest skill should be allowing words to do their work. If we do that, our writing should be very concise. I’m planning a series of posts here in the coming weeks–a how-to. I invite you to give these suggestions a try and see if you don’t sense the beauty of words anew.

Technique #1: Cut redundant modifiers.

In just a few exercises of looking for these little buggers, and they’ll start to leap off the page at you. This is an easily curable habit!

Basic essentials … climb up … each individual … end result … free gift … new initiative … past history … personal opinion … true fact …

When was a fact ever untrue? Or your opinion not personal? Or an initiative not new?

Look closely at the modifiers you include in your writing to be sure they’re not restating the word they’re modifying. If they are, delete them. You’re one step closer to being concise.

And, come on… words like initiative, opinion and fact speak wonderfully on their own when you let them.

What a Success!

Open BookI suppose it stands to reason: Free is a pretty consumer-friendly price. The “Read an eBook for Free” promotion at Smashwords resulted in more than 100 “purchases” of my book over the five days I participated. I am thrilled to have added a few new readers to the family. If you ordered up a free eCopy, or encouraged others to do so–THANK YOU!

I’m often asked about participating in these give-away promotions. People point out that I don’t make any money when giving copies of my books away. That’s true. But there is tremendous benefit, for my thinking, to getting copies of my books out and into people’s hands. I’m hesitant to spend money on books I know little about, and I’m a read-a-holic. So I completely understand someone’s reluctance to buy a book without having had a taste of what the author offers.

I’m always happy to give copies away.

Of course, that said, it’s especially nice to sell copies–after all, our third daughter will be entering college this fall. So help this starving artist, will you?

Thank you for helping me get the word out as you do. I appreciate sharing this literary journey with you!