Have you ever been reading a sentence, gotten to the end, and said, “What in the world did that even mean?”?
Do you then go back and read it again? And maybe again? And maybe even a fourth time?
I know I have. One of the primary reasons for this is that we can make our sentences too complex. There is no substitute for a short, punchy sentence, with “no ifs, ands, or buts.”
I realize that this statement doesn’t normally refer to writing. It typically refers to making excuses for yourself in “crisis” moments. But it still works.
I know for a fact I am guilty of lengthy sentences filled with parentheticals, several independent clauses, multiple dependent clauses, and other complicating factors. I am working on changing these habits.
But my encouragement to you today is this: simplify your writing. Try taking out as many ifs, ands, and buts as you can. Keep your sentences short. Occasionally add a more complicated sentence to break up the staccato feeling of your writing. But for the most part, be simple! I’m trying to practice this myself. I think it could do wonders for making writing more engaging.
Have a great day!