Weed Whacking

weed whacking


Just discovered an incomprehensible, impossibly long sentence in your manuscript?

Gasp!!

Kill the whole thing and call it a day?

Now just hold on a minute, wordsmith…give that red pen a rest.

First, ask what the GOAL of this monstrosity really is. Statement of fact? Call to action? Expression of feelings? List? Comparison? Physical description? …nonsense? (hopefully not)

Second, break it up into sections. Find a piece of it that you feel is solid, then ask yourself what you are trying to convey ABOUT that solid piece. Sometimes, simply cutting it in half is all you need to do. I’ve often found, however, that a writer may only have a vague idea of what they really desire to say.

Third, ask if it’s full of buzzwords and clichés. If so, how can you turn it into something original and thought provoking?

Going through this process can help weed out the unnecessary debris and leave the core blossom of the sentence standing in triumphant defiance. Your readers will thank you.