Three tips for making your writing more concise

These days, we are time-short due to our busy lifestyles.   We have rapid access via mobiles, tablets and computers to information and we expect this information to be delivered quickly and clearly.  So, if you are writing short pieces such as blogs, website updates or emails, remember:

  •              Users often stay less than 30 seconds on a website;
  •              Emails are often scanned in under 15 seconds;
  •              So you need to “say it fast, say it well”.

The following three tips may help you condense your writing. This will improve your online appeal as well as enhancing the quality of longer pieces you write, such as assignments and reports. Clear writing improves your professional image.

1)      Avoid tautology
Don’t use words that duplicate the meaning of a word/words used. Examples are:

  • Hollow tube                    - tube (i.e. if it is not hollow, it is a cylinder!)
  • Basic principles             - principles
  • Mutual cooperation      - cooperation
  • Exactly equal                - equal
  • Past history                   - history
  • Ask the question          - ask
  • Still continues              - continues
  • New innovation           - innovation


2)      Avoid the use of long words/phrases

       Simpler ones are often fine. Examples are:

·       utilize (use)

·       equitable (fair)

·       discontentment (discontent)

·       preventative (preventive)

·       in view of the fact that (since)

·       is equipped with  (has)

·       large number of (many)


3)     Avoid the use of filler verbs

Filler verbs are unnecessary–remove ones like “made”, “conducted”, “performing".


  •             A recording was made of the song (The song was recorded).
  •             We conducted a study of human pulse rate (We studied human pulse rates).
  •             They were performing an assessment of the product (They were assessing the product).