Hack The Flab #6Posted: March 22, 2011
Hack the flab from your writing or your readers might shout obscenities in your direction stop reading. Avoid the following 10 examples of flab:
- Big –Weak adjective. Replace with something more precise. Ex: He was a big man. Better: He was six feet tall and 250 pounds.
- Blend together – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need together. Ex: The colors blend together nicely. Better: The colors blend nicely
- Bouquet of flowers – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need of flowers. Ex: The bouquet of flows was beautiful. Better: The bouquet was beautiful.
- Brief moment – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need brief. Ex: For a brief moment, he was speechless. Better: For a moment, he was speechless.
- Brilliance – Nominalization (verb or adjective turned into a noun). Use the verb or adjective form for more powerful sentences. Ex: Not all posts require brilliance. Better: Not all posts must be brilliant.
- Cacophony of sound – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need of sound. Ex: The cacophony of sound from the band annoyed the crowd. Better: The cacophony from the band annoyed the crowd.
- Cameo appearance – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need appearance. Ex: The famous actor’s cameo appearance caused a riot. Better: The actor’s cameo caused a riot.
- Can – Authority Alert. If you believe something is true, don’t say, “It can do something.” Say, “It will do something.” Ex: Following these tips can improve your writing. Better: Following these tips will improve your writing.
- Cancel out – Redundant Phrase. You don’t need out. Ex: It’s too late to cancel out my subscription. Better: It’s too late to cancel my subscription.
- Care about – Flabby verb construction. Use value or like to save a word. Ex: Do your readers care about grammar? Better: Do your readers value grammar?