Conciseness

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Humorous presentation about how to write more concisely. Presents many examples of wordy writing and how to correct it.

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By: tccampa (99 month(s) ago)

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Presentation Transcript

How to Ruin Your Writing: Wordiness :

How to Ruin Your Writing: Wordiness Yes, you too can write badly!! Click for next 

PowerPoint Presentation:

Note: This presentation is animated. Please use “ Slide Show ” to view these notes. Click for next 

PowerPoint Presentation:

Information from The Purdue University Online Writing Lab was used to create this presentation Click for next 

Effective writing:

Effective writing Effective writing is concise, with no unnecessary words. Effective writing is NOT WORDY . Click for next 

Effective writing:

Effective writing The term “ wordy ” refers to writing with unnecessary words . Click for next 

Wordy = too much:

Wordy = too much Wordy writing is like wearing too much, trying a little too hard Click for next 

How to be really, really wordy :

How to be really, really wordy You too can write badly!!! Bore your readers!! Click for next 

Seriously….(a disclaimer):

Seriously …. (a disclaimer) You do not want to create wordy writing…you want to be concise . The “ Steps ” in this presentation are used humorously …look for the word “ seriously ” after each step to find serious writing advice. Click for next 

How to be WORDY:

How to be WORDY Step #1 ... Dull, wordy writing uses the following: I think that I believe that I feel that In my opinion It is my belief that It is my opinion that Click for next 

You already own it!:

You already own it! Seriously , never use “I think” “I feel” “I believe” “In my opinion” in your writing. Click for next 

You already own it!:

You already own it! If your name is on the paper, readers know to expect your thoughts, opinions, and ideas. I think cats make the worst pets. ( wordy ) Cats make the worst pets. (concise) In my opinion , caller I.D. is an invasion of privacy. ( wordy ) Caller I.D. is an invasion of privacy. (concise) Click for next 

How to be WORDY:

How to be WORDY Step #2 … Bore readers with wishy-washy & useless adjectives such as these: kind of sort of type of specific really basically Click for next 

Eliminate wishy-washy adjectives:

Eliminate wishy-washy adjectives Wishy-washy My mood generally depends on certain factors that are actually related to the type of foods I eat. OK, Seriously …don’t be wishy-washy Click for next 

Eliminate wishy-washy adjectives:

Eliminate wishy-washy adjectives Better (concise) My mood depends upon what I eat . OK, Seriously …don’t be wishy-washy Click for next 

Eliminate wishy-washy adjectives:

Eliminate wishy-washy adjectives Wishy-washy: Any particular type of dessert is fine with me . Click for next 

Eliminate wishy-washy adjectives:

Eliminate wishy-washy adjectives Better (concise) Any dessert is fine with me. Click for next 

Eliminate wishy-washy adjectives:

Eliminate wishy-washy adjectives Wishy-washy -Balancing the budget by Friday is impossible without some kind of extra help . Click for next 

Eliminate wishy-washy adjectives:

Eliminate wishy-washy adjectives Better (concise) -- Balancing the budget by Friday is impossible without extra help. Click for next 

Wishy-washy words :

Wishy-washy words kind of sort of type of really basically particular definitely actually generally individual Guaranteed to bore your readers! Click for next 

How to be WORDY:

How to be WORDY Step #3 … If one word is good, then LOTS of words must be better, right? Click for next 

Extra words!!!:

Extra words!!! Seriously… Like make-up, certain words enhance your writing . But too many words can be ugly. Click for next 

Change phrases into single words :

Change phrases into single words Look for prepositions to eliminate . to with of Click for next 

Change phrases into single words :

Change phrases into single words Look for prepositions to eliminate . Wordy An employee with ambition ... More Concise An ambitious employee… Click for next 

Change phrases into single words :

Change phrases into single words Wordy The decision of the judge will be final. More Concise The judge’s decision will be final. Click for next 

Change phrases into single words :

Change phrases into single words Wordy I met with a friend of mine at the door of his office . More Concise I met my friend at his office door . Click for next 

Change phrases into single words :

Change phrases into single words Use who which that sparingly Extra is not always good. Click for next 

Change phrases into single words :

Change phrases into single words Wordy The report, which was published recently ... More Concise The recently published report… Click for next 

Change phrases into single words :

Change phrases into single words Wordy All applicants who are interested in the job must... More Concise All interested job applicants must… Click for next 

Change phrases into single words :

Change phrases into single words Wordy The system that is most efficient and accurate . .. More Concise The most efficient and accurate system ... Click for next 

Change phrases into single words :

due to the fact that because of the fact that the reason why is that given the fact that because Change phrases into single words = Click for next 

Change phrases into single words :

in light of the fact that considering the fact that on the grounds that since Change phrases into single words = Click for next 

Change phrases into single words :

Wordy Concise Change phrases into single words Click for next  At this/that point in time... As you requested, In accordance with your request... Now/then

Change phrases into single words :

Wordy Concise Change phrases into single words Click for next  in order to… thinks/ believes is under the impression that to until such time as until

Change phrases into single words :

Wordy Concise Change phrases into single words Click for next  He is a man who... can has the ability to… he

Change phrases into single words :

Wordy Concise Change phrases into single words Click for next  in spite of the fact that thinks/ believes be of the opinion that although the question as to whether whether

Change phrases into single words :

Wordy Concise Change phrases into single words Click for next  put forth an effort disappear / vanish disappear from view try / attempt

Change phrases into single words :

on the occasion of during a time which in a situation in which under circumstances in which when = Change phrases into single words Click for next 

More wordy constructions + alternatives:

More wordy constructions + alternatives it is crucial that it is necessary that there is a need/necessity for it is important that cannot be avoided must , should = Click for next 

More wordy constructions + alternatives:

More wordy constructions + alternatives as regards in reference to with regard to concerning the matter of where ___ is concerned about = Click for next 

More wordy constructions + alternatives:

More wordy constructions + alternatives in today's world in this day and age in today’s society today = Click for next 

More wordy constructions + alternatives:

while More wordy constructions + alternatives during the same time that during the time that in the time that… = Click for next 

How to be WORDY:

How to be WORDY Step #4 … Weaken your sentences with expletives There were It was There are It is Click for next 

Avoid expletives:

Avoid expletives Expletives are phrases using It + be-verb or there + be-verb . AVOID: It is It was There is There was Click for next 

Avoid expletives:

Avoid expletives Seriously… Instead of using expletives , begin sentences with a NOUN and VERB . Noun Verb Click for next 

Avoid expletives:

Avoid expletives Wordy It is important that we find a solution . Concise We must find a solution . It is Click for next 

Avoid expletives:

Avoid expletives Wordy There are four rules that should be observed... Concise Four rules should be observed:... There are Click for next 

Avoid expletives:

Avoid expletives Wordy There was a big explosion which shook the windows, and there were many people running into the street. Concise A big explosion shook the windows, and people ran into the street. Click for next 

How to be WORDY:

How to be WORDY Step #5 … Let your verbs be passive and lazy Click for next 

Verbs should be active! :

Verbs should be active ! Seriously… Verbs should show ACTION . Avoid passive verbs when possible. Click for next 

Active Verbs:

Active Verbs In sentences with active verbs , the subject performs the action expressed in the verb. The cat ate the goldfish . Scientists presented the report . Click for next 

Passive Verbs:

Passive Verbs In sentences with passive verbs , the verbs are weaker because the object receives the action . The goldfish was eaten by the cat. The report was presented by scientists . Click for next 

Verbs should be active! :

Verbs should be active ! ACTIVE VERB --- ate PASSIVE VERB --- was eaten by The teachers ate the cake. The cake was eaten by the teachers. Click for next 

Verbs should be active! :

Verbs should be active ! Wordy (passive verb) An account was opened by Mrs. Simms. More Concise (active verb) Mrs. Simms opened an account . Click for next 

Use active rather than passive verbs :

Use active rather than passive verbs Wordy (passive verb) Many errors were corrected by the student. More Concise (active verb) The student corrected many errors. Click for next 

How to be WORDY:

How to be WORDY Step #7 … Be redundant and repeat the same ideas over and over and over… Click for next 

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy :

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy Seriously… Redundancy is unnecessary repetition . Redundant expressions make writing longer , not better. Click for next 

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy :

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy Eliminate expressions that add nothing to what has already been said. Click for next 

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy :

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy past memories (memories are always in the past) Absolutely certain (certain is already absolute ) Click for next  I remember the future! You’re going to eat me? Are you certain ?

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy :

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy basic fundamentals (basic = fundamental ) true facts (facts are already true) Click for next  Basic Fundamental Math Basic Fundamental Math For students who need something simpler than basic . We want true facts, not false ones.

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy :

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy future plans (plans are always made for the future) terrible tragedy (a tragedy is already terrible) Click for next  This is terrible! I’d like a fun tragedy once in a while!

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy :

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy end result (results come at the end ) final outcome (outcome is final ) I want results at the beginning ! Click for next  I’m here with the mid- outcome , for those who can’t wait for the final.

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy :

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy free gift (gift = freely given) past history (history is always in the past) Click for next  Happy Birthday! That will be $20.00 please. Santa Claus gives me free gifts.

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy :

Avoid Redundancy Redundancy unexpected surprise (does this even need explanation?) sudden crisis (crisis implies a sudden occurrence) Click for next  $5 million winner WOW! I never expected to win! $5 million winner Right on time, as expected. I prefer a gradual crisis.

Redundant Categories:

Redundant Categories Some words imply their general categories, so we don't have to state both. For example, we already know that pink is a color and that shiny is an appearance . Click for next 

Redundant Categories:

Redundant Categories large in size (“large” is a size) red in color (“red” is a color) AVOID the following: Red in color Click for next 

Redundant Categories:

Redundant Categories often times (“ often ” already describes time) heavy in weight (“ heavy ” is a weight) AVOID the following: Click for next  Heavy in weight

Redundant Categories:

Redundant Categories at an early time (“early” describes time) economics field (economics is a field) AVOID the following: Early time Economics Click for next 

Redundant Categories :

Redundant Categories round in shape (“round” is a shape) of cheap quality (“cheap” denotes quality) AVOID the following : in shape Round Just cheap ! Click for next 

Redundant Categories :

Redundant Categories in a confused state (confusion is a state of mind) unusual in nature (“unusual” describes the nature of something) AVOID the following : Just confused ! Just unusual ! Click for next 

How to be WORDY:

How to be WORDY Step #8 … It’s easy as pie to be wordy when using CLICHES! Easy Click for next 

Clichés :

Clichés Seriously, avoid using cliches ! Clichés are common , and that's exactly the reason you should avoid them . Click for next 

Clichés :

Clichés Think about this: when you hear somebody say , “ You can’t teach an old dog new tricks " do you ever visualize the image? Click for next 

Clichés :

Clichés Probably not. You probably do not visualize an old dog ignoring someone trying to teach a new trick. You have heard the expression so many times that it means very little anymore. I might be able to learn a new trick… Click for next 

Clichés :

Clichés Avoid clichés! Beginning writers often mistakenly think that clichés make their writing sound more " literary ," more creative , or more original . I know…I’ll say I was happy as a clam and felt like a million bucks because I decided to be myself. Click for next 

Clichés :

Clichés Avoid clichés! However , clichés have just the opposite effect . They are worn-out expressions that have lost their vitality from overuse , and they are one sign of weak writing . He couldn’t come up with anything better than “ happy as a clam ?” Click for next 

How to be WORDY:

How to be WORDY Step #9 … Add intensifiers “ very ” “ really ” and “ extremely ” to everything! Very, really, and extremely strong!! Click for next 

Use intense words, not intensifiers:

Use intense words, not intensifiers Seriously …avoid “ very ” “ really ” and “ extremely ” Click for next  Very, really, extremely are “ leeches that infest the pond of prose . ” George Orwell

Use intense words, not intensifiers:

Use intense words, not intensifiers Avoid “ very ” “ really ” and “ extremely ” Rather than enhancing words, these words actually bleed meaning away . very happy happy Click for next 

Use intense words, not intensifiers:

Use intense words, not intensifiers very (as in “ very interesting") quite (as in " quite appetizing") little (as in "a little tired") pretty (as in " pretty good") really (" really impressive") Examples of what NOT to write: Click for next 

Remember…Description = :

Remember…Description = … better , stronger words NOT more words! Click for next 

One final point…:

One final point… Sometimes you need a lot of words. A sentence is not "wordy" just because it is long. Click for next 

Effective writing:

Effective writing A sentence can be long and concise . You want to avoid unnecessary words in your writing. Click for next 

The best writing is vivid and concise…:

The best writing is vivid and concise… End of presentation .

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