Advice on Adding More Power I don’t want a passive voice. I want an active one…Help!!
Delete repeated Words Wordy: The childhood disease chicken pox occasionally leads to dangerous complications, such as the disease known as Reye’s syndrome. Concise: The childhood disease chicken pox occasionally leads to dangerous complications, such as Reye’s syndrome.
Substituting a Pronoun Wordy: Agatha Christie’s Miss Marplehas solved many difficult cases. The Murder at the Vicarage was one of Miss Marple’smost challenging cases. Concise: Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple has solved many difficult cases. The Murder at the Vicarage was one of her most challenging cases.
Using Elliptical Clauses Wordy: Quincy Market is a popular tourist attraction in Boston; the White House is a popular tourist attraction in Washington, DC Concise: Quincy Market is a popular tourist attraction in Boston: the White House, in Washington, DC.
Creating Appositives Wordy: Red Barber was a sportscaster. He was known for his colorful expressions. Concise: Red Barber, a sportscaster, was known for his colorful expressions.
Creating Compounds Wordy: Huckleberry Finn is an adventure story. It is also a sad account of an abused, neglected child. Concise: Huckleberry Finn is both an adventure story and a sad account of an abused, neglected child.
Creating Complex Sentences Wordy: Americans value freedom of speech. Freedom of speech is guaranteed by the First Amendment. Concise: Americans value freedom of speech, which is guaranteed by the First Amendment.
Eliminating Passive Constructions Excessive use of the passive voice can make sentences ramble. You can change this problem by changing passive to active voice..
Wordy: “Buy American” rallies are being organized by concerned Americans who hope that jobs can be saved by such gatherings. Concise: Concerned Americans are organizing “Buy American” rallies, hoping that such gatherings can save jobs.
Eliminating Wordy Prepositional Phrases When you revise, substitute adjectives or adverbs for wordy prepositional phrases.. Wordy: The trip was one of danger but also one of excitement. Concise: The trip was dangerous but exciting.
Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no powerless sentences… Revise for power. Push for an active voice, not a passive one.