Dip in to this list anywhere, and give your inner editor’s funny bone a tickle. Take “hurriedly scurried.” Or “moral high horse.” Or “live studio audience.” “Old codgers.” “Old coots.” “Old fossils.” “Old ruins.” “Commonly available general knowledge that anyone would know.” I don’t make this stuff up. Bonus: Smiling at redundant phrases sharpens your writing. Warning: These things are addictive. Continue reading
A car pulled up next to my Prius at a stoplight in downtown Portland. The driver opened her window and asked, “What does your bumper sticker mean?” Through my passenger window, I told her that it means to look for verbs like “is” and “were” and “are,” and then consider how you might reword to make the writing tighter and more impactful. “You made my day,” she said. Continue reading
Special revival edition of the Tighten This! game.
I chopped off the first four paragraphs, massaged the middle, and refashioned and refashioned the ending—oh, how I wanted to say things there!—until nothing remained but what had happened. Continue reading
“Sir, I need to see your ticket,” the bus driver says. A young man, maybe in his early twenties, is walking toward the back of the bus, where I’m sitting… Continue reading
The final post in the Tighten This! game.
How would you tighten this week’s Challenge Sentence? “The successful candidate will be the key leader and customer advocate working closely with…” Continue reading
How would you tighten this week’s Challenge Sentence? “There remains a lot of confusion about what buyer personas are and aren’t and how…”
How would you tighten this week’s Challenge Sentence? “In this tutorial you’ll find a demonstration of techniques for eliminating preposition bloat through…” Continue reading
Want a timeless, painless tip that quickly helps you clarify your writing? Look for the little word “it.” Continue reading