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Crafting Shorter Sentences – Our 5 Top Tips

Editing and Proofreading

It is a truth, universally acknowledged, that all writers fall prey to overwriting at one time or another.

Sometimes when you sit down to write, the mind can wander and sentences become as long as a winter evening, or your typical episode of The Wire. There is nothing wrong with it, but writing is like life: it needs variety.

Run-on sentences also distract the writer and the reader and also force the reader to work harder to follow the story.

Here are a few tricks to help trim the excess:

Use Stats

Activate Readability statistics on your computer and it will count you average word count per sentence and how this appeals to a reader. Remember you want to work with an average number of words. You should also try to vary the length of your sentences, just to keep things interesting.

Count your Commas

If you are not listing items, and your sentence has more than three commas, you should consider splitting the sentence into two.

Cut Conjunctions

Conjunctions join sentences. Find them and decide if you can remove them and make two sentences instead of one.

One Paragraph, One Thought

The first line of your paragraph usually tells you what to expect from the rest of it. Readers tend to focus on the first line and skim the rest, so if you have two or three crucial points later in the same paragraph, your reader may miss them.

Remove Redundant Words

Remove words that don’t add value. If you can remove a word from the sentence and it doesn’t change the meaning of the sentence, you don’t need the word.

We hope these help and if you want to get your story published, don’t forget to contact us at selfpublishbooks.ie.  We help you publish your book, the way you want it. We can also help edit and format your books and create top quality paperback and hardback books. So, if you’re interested in seeing your story come to life, let us know.

 

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