When the Horse is Dead…Get Off!!!

H.P. Lovecraft aside, there is nothing to be gained from wordy, repetitious prose. It does nothing for your writing, nothing for your speaking, nothing for your arguments. What it does do is turn a quick read, something easy to listen to or respond to, into a kind of mental gymnastics that gives rise to boredom and leads to your audience checking out, often for good.

Here are some things to help you remember that when the horse is dead, get off:

  • Brevity is the soul of wit. If you can say it in a paragraph, say it in a sentence; if you can say it in a sentence, say it in a word.
  • Rely on the Active Voice. The passive voice just adds unnecessary words and leads to convolutions of logic that can be difficult to sort out. Avoid it!
  • Repetition is evil. Unless you have to emphasize something, once you have said something, there is no reason to say it again.

Brevity is your friend–use it!


1 Comment

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One response to “When the Horse is Dead…Get Off!!!

  1. This is how l like to write, though I do tend toward passive voice. Funny thing about repeating words. I wrote an editorial about it on the book Fifty Shades to have a good laugh.

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