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As a writer, it’s important not only to think about what you say, but how you say it. To communicate effectively, it isn’t adequate to have well organized ideas expressed in complete and sentences that are coherent paragraphs. One must also look at the style, tone and clarity of his/her writing, and adapt these elements into the reading audience. Again, analyzing a person’s audience and purpose is the key to effectiveness that is writing. The writer must consider the objective of the document, the context in which it is being written, and who will be reading it in order to choose the most effective language.
Concrete language includes descriptions which create tangible images with details your reader can visualize. Abstract language is vague and obscure, and does not bring to mind specific visual images. Think about the two sets of statements below. The statement at the top is abstract, however the statements become increasingly specific and concrete toward the bottom.
He is a roommate that is bad is lazy and discourteous
He could be untidy and unclean
He does not tidy up his very own messes
He leaves his dirty dishes regarding the kitchen counter
Your relationship with John is unacceptable
that you do not get along well with John
both you and John have plenty of arguments you and John too insult each other much
You and John call one another derogatory names
Notice how much more beneficial the statements become while the language gets to be more concrete and specific. The statements at the very top, which are more abstract, may be interpreted in several ways that are possible and then leave many questions answered. The statements in the bottom, that are more concrete, are less ready to accept multiple interpretations.
A hallmark of effective writers is the ability to express the desired message in as few words as possible. Good writers, simply put, use language which will be to-the-point and straightforward. Think about the examples that are following.
(1) it really is widely discussed by employees that many of these is likely to be forced to change jobs and take on new responsibilities when the merger takes place between the two companies.
(2) before deciding about whether the person on trial is guilty or innocent in this instance, the members of the jury should always be sure to carefully think about, ponder and think about all of the important and relevant testimony in the outcome.
Notice how long-winded these sentences are, and how easily they may be shortened and simplified. An important part of revising and editing involves re-phrasing sentences to eliminate excessive wordiness. One good way to reduce wordiness is always to eliminate redundant words or phrases. Consider example one above. The phrases “to change jobs” and “take on new responsibilities” are redundant, and might be combined into one phrase that is short be expressed more concisely.
Consider example two above. The phrase “. must be certain to carefully think of, ponder and think on. ” contains three ways of saying the same thing. This sentence might be improved through the use of only 1 associated with key phrases: “. to reflect on. “
A second method to reduce wordiness is always to eliminate “filler” words which serve no purpose within the sentence. Consider example one above. Replace the phrase “. once the merger takes place between your two companies” with “. when the two companies merge.” Consider example two above. Notice the wordiness that is excessive listed here phrase: “Before making a decision about whether or not the person on trial is guilty or innocent in this situation . ” This sentence could simply read: “Before determining the defendant’s guilt or innocence. “
Familiar language is that that your readers easily recognize and understand because they utilize it on a frequent basis. The most important functions of language is to build “homophily” or a sense of commonality with a person’s readers. Language that will be foreign and unfamiliar to the reader has a tendency to emphasize the differences between writer and reader, and helps make the message tough to understand. By utilizing language that is familiar into the reader, the message is likely to have significantly more impact.
Consider the examples that are following.
An assignment fond of a course of business students by their philosophy professor:
“The presently assigned paper necessitates an eloquently articulated analysis regarding the Existentialist perspective as it pertains to living that is contemporary. You should adumbrate the true points which represent the sine qua non of one’s analysis.”
A letter sent to high school students warning them of the risks of an unhealthy diet:
“Individuals who maintain an eating plan of high fat content are confronted with a heightened danger of developing atherosclerosis, that is a buildup of fat deposits in the inner walls associated with arteries. This condition can lessen or cut the flow off of blood in the arteries serving the most important organs of this body. This will probably result in poor health.”
In both examples above, the language that is used is unfamiliar towards the readers customwriting. As a result, the message loses its impact.
The employment of appropriate language is a matter that is tricky this is of words is relative and situational. This means that, words could be interpreted in different ways by different people in different situations. Because of this good reason, you should choose language which can be as precise and clear as you possibly can. The more precise and one that is clear utilization of language becomes, the fewer the sheer number of possible interpretations for a message. Consider the following words. What numerical value would you assign to each of those? If something is “probable what percentage of the time does it occur? P>
Would other folks assign the same value to these words as you did? In most cases, the range of values varies greatly because these terms are relative: they can mean things that are different different people in different situations. How could one be more precise in his/her utilization of these terms?
Think about the examples below. Notice that these terms can vary widely into the meaning to differing people. The simplest way to utilize such relative terms, then, is always to compare them to something concrete and “known” to the reader. An expensive car?” is best answered with a comparison: “Compared to that Honda, the Acura is expensive for example: “Is that Acura. When compared with that Lexus, it really is inexpensive.”
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Consider the examples that are following. Note the potential confusion or ambiguity in these phrases.
(1) Why the student body should continue in this state of apathy is not understandable.
(2) Our student body is dull and slack-minded.
(3) The practice and theory of politics are studied when you look at the classroom but political habits on campus do not appear to take advantage of such labor.
(4) he is an interesting individual.
(5) It is difficult to estimate how many people affected by AIDS.
Each one of the following are actual headlines printed in newspapers. Notice their double meaning.
(1) Include your young ones when Baking Cookies
(2) Safety Experts Say School Buss Passengers should always be Belted
(3) Bank Drive-in Window Blocked by Board
(4) Killer Sentenced to Die for Second Time in Ten Years
(5) Eye Drops Off Shelf
Simply speaking, it is advisable to consider carefully regarding your selection of words and their potential interpretations. To communicate effectively, precise and clear language is essential.