Shortening sentences

One of the most reoccurring problems for writers is that we want to be colorful with our words. We like thinking about each sentence, adding descriptive words and sometimes words that the reader may need a dictionary for. However, we forget that it’s not just about the words, but also about the sentence structure. So my question is:

What are the unnecessary words that pop up in our writing that we can get rid off?

Here are some examples of what I mean:


I want to fall in love with a man who is honest.

unnecessary words (in this case wrong wording): a man who is honest.

New sentence: I want to fall in love with an honest man. 


Mike reached out with his hand for his iPad.

Unnecessary words: with his hand (we know that he’s reaching out with his hand. What else can he use?)

New sentence: Mike reached out for his iPad.


Leon got the job in spite of the fact that he was way too early for the interview.

Unnecessary words: in spite of the fact that (Technically you can use it but it’s wordy)

New sentence: Leon got the job although he was way too early for the interview.


That’s your personal opinion.

Unnecessary words: personal (‘your’ is already personal)

New sentence: That’s your opinion.


Mike nodded his head at Brigitte for saying the right thing.

Unnecessary words: his head. (know the definition. You can only nod your head.)

New sentence: Mike nodded at Brigitte for saying the right thing. 


I will set my alarm for 3 A.M. in the morning so we won’t miss the train.

Unnecessary words: in the morning (A.M. means morning)

New sentence: I will set my alarm for 3 A.M. so we won’t miss the train.


Each and everyone of you are invited to my game party this Friday at 8 P.M. 

Unnecessary words: and everyone (self explanatory)

New sentence: Each of you are invited to my game party this Friday at 8 P.M.


The end result of this argument is that you’re grounded young lady.

Unnecessary words: end (result is an ending to something already)

New sentence: The result of this argument is that you’re grounded young lady.


I hope that this was helpful.

Do you have examples of other unnecessary words?

4 thoughts on “Shortening sentences

  1. Pingback: The Liebster Award! – The Other Side of Counting to Ten

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s