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Simplify your writing

This past March, I presented a session to RRU staff on how to simplify writing to make it more effective. During that session, we discussed the following strategies:

  • Think before you write
  • Start the sentence with the subject and verb
  • Keep sentences short and focused
  • Use simple language
  • Delete non-essential descriptors
  • Delete non-essential qualifiers
  • Delete redundancies
  • Avoid vague pronouns
  • Check for passive voice
  • Proofread

My PowerPoint presentation from the session is now available in the Resources section of the Writing Centre website, but please click here to access the presentation directly. Each slide focuses on one strategy and provides information and examples (example "A" is the original text; example "B" is the rewritten text that incorporates the strategy). I hope you'll find the information useful, and please contact the Writing Centre if you have any questions.

Theresa Bell
Writing centre coordinator

(Originally published in Crossroads May 28, 2014)