A Handful of Tips 94 – Editing
The five best tips when revising your drafts
If you want your writing to be read you must use crisp clear and concise language.
Edit, edit, edit. Check for logic, continuity, long sentences, long paragraphs and incorrect grammar.
1. Remove all unnecessary words and phrases
Use plain language, short sentences and short paragraphs.
Check spelling and punctuation.
Avoid jargon and clichés.
2. Make your pages visually interesting
Set out your messages so they are easy to read.
Leave plenty of white space on your pages
Use headings and sub-headings.
Use direct speech. List points with bullets, numbers, dots etc.
There are many tricks to make your pages look lively and interesting.
3. Make your messages memorable
Write with enthusiasm and sincerity.
Aim to give your readers new information.
Recommendations should be clear and positive.
It must be easy to read.
4. Eliminate sexist writing
If you want to influence both sexes make an effort to use non-sexist writing. (See pages 63-64 in ‘Persuasive Ways’)
5. Be prepared to rewrite important messages several times
Be brief, be positive, be helpful.
“The shorter your words and sentences, the easier they are to read and heed.”
SOURCE: “Persuasive Ways” published by Moss Associates Ltd, New Zealand and in Chinese by Shanghai People’s Publishing House and as “Secrets of Persuasion” by Cengage Learning Asia. Also available as an e-book from Amazon.com.