Hack The Flab #12

Hack the flab from your writing or your readers might shout obscenities in your direction stop reading. Avoid the following 10 examples of flab:

  1. Estimated at about –Redundant Phrase. You don’t need at about. Ex: Construction costs estimated at about three million dollars. Better: Construction costs estimated three million dollars.
  2. Every single person – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need single (unless referring to marital status). Ex: Every single person should attend. Better: Every person should attend.
  3. Evolve over time – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need over time. Ex: Relationships evolve over time. Better: Relationships evolve.
  4. Exact same – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need exact. Ex: They spoke at the exact same time. Better: They spoke at the same time.
  5. Facility – Stilted phrase. Say exactly what an object is (school, hospital, government building). Ex. The facility had a large cafeteria. Better: Johnson Elementary School had a large cafeteria.
  6. Factor – Dull, unnecessary word. Replace with a verb. Ex: Avid reading was a factor in his reading ability. Better: Avid reading helped his writing.
  7. Failure – Nominalization (Wordiness introduced when someone uses the noun equivalent of a verb or adjective). Use the verb or adjective form for more powerful sentences. Ex: His failure was caused by not studying. Better: He failed because he didn’t study.
  8. Fall/Fell down – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need down. Ex: If you fall down, try again. Better: If you fall, try again.
  9. Favorable approval – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need favorable. Ex: The drawings received favorable approval from the planning board. Better: The drawings received approval from the planning board. Best: The planning board approved the drawings.
  10. Fellow classmate – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need fellow. Ex: A fellow classmate teased Johnny. Better: A classmate teased Johnny.

 


Hack The Flab #11

Hack the flab from your writing or your readers might shout obscenities in your direction stop reading. Avoid the following 10 examples of flab:

  1. Eagerly – Weak Adverb. Replace with descriptive text. Ex. He waited eagerly. Better: He waited, eyes wide, smile from ear to ear.
  2. Eliminate altogether – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need altogether. Ex: We should reduce or eliminate altogether speeding ticket fines. Better: We should reduce or eliminate speeding ticket fines.
  3. Emergency situation – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need situation. Ex: We have an emergency situation at the school. Better: We have an emergency at the school.
  4. Empty out – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need out. Ex: Empty out the dishwasher. Better: Empty the dishwasher.
  5. End result – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need end. Ex: Study and the end results will please you. Better: Study and the results will please you.
  6. Encouragement – Nominalization (Wordiness introduced when someone uses the noun equivalent of a verb or adjective). Use the verb or adjective form for more powerful sentences. Ex: His encouragement helped my success. Better: He encouraged me and I succeeded.
  7. Eliminate entirely – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need entirely. Ex: We could eliminate entirely testing and students would still learn. Better: We could eliminate testing and students would still learn.
  8. Enter in – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need in. Ex: Enter in your name and email address. Better: Enter your name and email address.
  9. Equal to one another – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need to one another. Ex: They are equal to one another in size, but Joe is faster. Better: They are equal in size, but Joe is faster.
  10. Eradicate completely – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need completely. Ex: We must eradicate completely these roaches. Better: We must eradicate these roaches.

Hack The Flab #10

Hack the flab from your writing or your readers might shout obscenities in your direction stop reading. Avoid the following 10 examples of flab:

  1. Desirable benefit – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need desirable. Ex: What desirable benefit does writing offer? Better: What benefit does writing offer?
  2. Did not have much confidence in – Avoid using not if possible. Readers don’t like when you tell them what is not. They like when you tell them what is. Use distrusted or doubted. Ex. The soldiers did not have much confidence in their officers. Better: The soldiers doubted their officers’ abilities.
  3. Did not pay attention to – Avoid using not if possible. Readers don’t like when you tell them what is not. They like when you tell them what is. Use ignored. Ex. The soldiers did not listen to their officers. Better: The soldiers ignored their officers’ orders.
  4. Did not remember – Avoid using not if possible. Readers don’t like when you tell them what is not. They like when you tell them what is. Use forgot. Ex. The soldiers did not remember their instructions. Better: The soldiers forgot their instructions.
  5. Different kinds – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need different. Ex: The chart lists five different kinds of animals. Better: The chart lists five kinds of animals.
  6. Due to – Clunky expression. Use because of or because it instead. Ex: He got wet due to the rain. Better: He got wet because of the rain. Best: He got wet because it rained (Fixes nominalization by changing rain from a noun to a verb).
  7. Due to the fact that – Empty phrase. Delete or use because or since. Ex: Due to the fact that I write, I love books. Better: Because I write, I love books.
  8. During the course of – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need the course of. Ex: The forecast will change during the course of the day. Better: The forecast will change during the day.
  9. Dwindle down – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need down. Ex: She loved to shop, so her savings dwindled down. Better: She loved to shop, so her savings dwindled.
  10. Each and every – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need and every. Ex: I loved each and every one of them. Better: I loved each one of them.

Hack The Flab #9

Hack the flab from your writing or your readers might shout obscenities in your direction stop reading. Avoid the following 10 examples of flab:

  1. Could possibly – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need possibly. Ex: You could possibly win. Better: You could win.
  2. Crisis situation – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need situation. Ex: Relax and think clearly during a crisis situation. Better: Relax and think clearly during a crisis.
  3. Current trend – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need current. Ex: Some say blogging is a current trend you should avoid. Better: Some say blogging is a trend you should avoid.
  4. Cut down on – Flabby Phrasal Verbs. Use reduce or limit. Ex: You should cut down on your sugar intake. Better: You should limit your sugar intake.
  5. Decision – Nominalization (Wordiness introduced when someone uses the noun equivalent of a verb or adjective). Use the verb or adjective form for more powerful sentences. Ex: He made a decision to quit smoking. Better: He decided to quit smoking.
  6. Decrease in strength – Nominalization (Wordiness introduced when someone uses the noun equivalent of a verb or adjective). Use the verb or adjective form for more powerful sentences. Ex: You’ll decrease in strength if you work out too much. Better: You’ll weaken if you exercise too much.
  7. Definition – Nominalization (Wordiness introduced when someone uses the noun equivalent of a verb or adjective). Use the verb or adjective form for more powerful sentences. Ex: His definition of fun was sleeping and watching television. Better: He defined fun as sleeping and watching television.
  8. Depreciate in value – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need in value. Ex: Assets depreciate in value as each year passes. Better: Assets depreciate as each year passes.
  9. Descend down – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need down. Ex: Descend down the steps to exit the building. Better: Descend the steps to exit the building.
  10. Description – Nominalization (Wordiness introduced when someone uses the noun equivalent of a verb or adjective). Use the verb or adjective form for more powerful sentences. Ex: What’s your description of great writing? Better: How would you describe great writing?

Hack The Flab #8

Hack the flab from your writing or your readers might shout obscenities in your direction stop reading. Avoid the following 10 examples of flab:

  1. Comparison – Nominalization (Wordiness introduced when someone uses the noun equivalent of a verb or adjective). Use the verb or adjective form for more powerful sentences. Ex: He made a comparison with apples and oranges. Better: He compared apples with oranges.
  2. Compete against each other – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need against each other. Ex: They compete against each other. Better: They compete.
  3. Compete with each other – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need with each other. Ex: They compete with each other. Better: They compete.
  4. Completely Destroyed – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need completely. Ex: Joe completely destroyed his room. Better: Joe destroyed his room.
  5. Completely eliminate – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need completely. Ex: You must completely eliminate your foes. Better: You must eliminate your foes.
  6. Completely engulfed – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need completely. Ex: Flames completely engulfed the house. Better: Flames engulfed the house.
  7. Completely filled – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need completely. Ex: He completely filled his cup. Better: He filled his cup.
  8. Conclusion – Nominalization (Wordiness introduced when someone uses the noun equivalent of a verb or adjective). Use the verb or adjective form for more powerful sentences. Ex: His conclusion was she loved poetry. Better: He concluded she loved poetry.
  9. Connect together – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need together. Ex: Connect together the two wires. Better: Connect the two wires.
  10. Could – Authority Alert. If you believe something is true, don’t say, “It could do something,” say, “It will or would do something.” Ex. Following these tips could make you rich. Better: Following these tips will make you rich.

Hack The Flab #7

Hack the flab from your writing or your readers might shout obscenities in your direction stop reading. Avoid the following 10 examples of flab:

  1. Careful scrutiny – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need careful. Ex: The lawyer read the document with careful scrutiny. Better: The lawyer read the document with scrutiny. Best: The lawyer scrutinized the document.
  2. Catch on – Flabby verb construction. Use resonate or spread. Ex: Hopefully the message will catch on. Better: Hopefully the message will spread.
  3. Caught on – Flabby verb construction. Use resonated or spread. Ex: The show caught on and became world-famous. Better: The show resonated and became world-famous.
  4. Caused a drop in morale – Nominalization (Wordiness introduced when someone uses the noun equivalent of a verb or adjective). Use the verb or adjective form for more powerful sentences. Ex: Pay cuts caused a drop in morale within our company. Better: Pay cuts demoralized our company.
  5. Caused considerable confusion – Nominalization (Wordiness introduced when someone uses the noun equivalent of a verb or adjective). Use the verb or adjective form for more powerful sentences. In this case, use something more powerful, like confused or baffled. Ex: The instructions caused considerable confusion in the class. Better: The instructions baffled the class.
  6. Cease and desist – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need and desist (Unless you’re a lawyer). Ex: Cease and desist all contact with Mrs. Jones. Better: Cease all contact with Mrs. Jones.
  7. Classify into groups – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need in groups. Ex: Classify into groups these specimens. Better: Classify these specimens.
  8. Close proximity – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need close. Ex: The close proximity of the two fighters excited the crowd. Better: The proximity of the two fighters excited the crowd.
  9. Closed fist – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need closed. Ex: He hit me with a closed fist. Better: He hit me with his fist.
  10. Commute back and forth – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need back and forth. Ex: His commute back and forth exhausted him. Better: His commute exhausted him.

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