“I have made this letter longer than usual, only because I have not had the time to make it shorter”.
(Seventeenth century philosopher Blaise Pascal)
Concise writing is hard to produce.
The trouble with some words is that they are, basically, overused and unnecessary. To all intents and purposes, they are redundant. The end result of their use is that your copy becomes bloated. Look out for them on a daily basis.
Some words are not necessary, even redundant. Use them and your copy becomes bloated. Look for them daily.
English vocabulary is repetitious. Quite simply, too many words mean the same thing. While at best this forms the richness of the language, at worst, it’s turgid.
So many phrases have worked their way into speech that it can be tempting to believe one word can’t exist without the other. In general, it’s good practice to include only those words which are necessary to get over meaning or to entertain. There is no rule which says that a latecomer should arrive ‘safe and sound’, for example, rather than ‘safely’.
Unnecessary words dilute your message, waste your reader’s time and take up space that could be put to better use.
It’s useful to review your copy for words which, though common, may be repeated too often within a short piece of writing. Find alternative words, or rewrite sections completely.
We’re still unsure if the person who wrote: “I enclose the enclosed enclosure” in a customer letter was having a laugh.