As a writer, it’s important not just to think about what you say, but how it is said by you. To communicate effectively, it is really not enough to have well organized ideas expressed in complete and coherent sentences and paragraphs. One must also take into account the style, tone and clarity of his/her writing, and adapt these elements into the audience that is reading. Again, analyzing an individual’s audience and purpose is key to writing effectiveness. 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.
Characteristics of Effective Language
Concrete language includes descriptions which create tangible images with details your reader can visualize. Abstract language is vague and obscure, and will not bring to mind specific images that are visual. Consider the two sets of statements below. The statement at the top is abstract, nevertheless the statements become increasingly specific and concrete toward the base.
He is a roommate that is bad is lazy and discourteous
He could be untidy and unclean
He does not clean up his very own messes
He leaves his dirty dishes from the kitchen counter
Your relationship with John is unacceptable
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 effective the statements become since the language becomes more specific and concrete. The statements towards the top, which are far more abstract, can be interpreted in many ways that are possible and then leave many questions answered. The statements in the bottom, which are more concrete, are less available to interpretations that are multiple.
A hallmark of effective writers is the power to express the required message in as few words as you can. Good writers, in other words, use language which is straightforward and to-the-point. Think about the examples that are following.
(1) it really is widely discussed by employees that many of these are going to be obligated to change jobs and take on responsibilities that are new the merger takes place involving the two companies.
(2) before carefully deciding about perhaps the person on trial is guilty or innocent in this instance, the members of the jury should be sure to carefully think about, ponder and think about all of the important and testimony that is relevant the outcome.
Notice how long-winded these sentences are, and how easily they are often simplified and shortened. A significant part of revising and editing involves re-phrasing sentences to eradicate excessive wordiness. One way to reduce wordiness is always to eliminate redundant words or phrases. Consider example one above. The phrases “to alter jobs” and “take on new responsibilities” are redundant, and could 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 about. ” contains 3 ways of saying the thing that is same. This sentence could be improved by using only 1 of the phrases that are key “. to reflect on. “
A way that is second reduce wordiness is to eliminate “filler” words which serve no purpose within the sentence. Consider example one above. Replace the phrase “. as soon as the merger takes place between the two companies” with “. when the two companies merge.” Consider example two above. Notice the excessive wordiness in listed here phrase: “Before making a choice about perhaps the person on trial is guilty or innocent in this instance . ” This sentence could simply read: “Before determining the defendant’s guilt or innocence. “
Familiar language is that that your readers easily recognize and understand since they use it on a regular basis. One of the more important functions of language would be to build “homophily” or a feeling of commonality with one’s readers. Language which can be foreign and unfamiliar to your reader tends to emphasize the distinctions between writer and reader, and makes the message tough to understand. Through the use of language this is certainly familiar to the reader, the message probably will have significantly more impact.
Think about the examples that are following.
An assignment fond of a class of business students by their philosophy professor:
“The presently assigned paper necessitates an eloquently articulated analysis associated with the Existentialist perspective when it comes to living that is contemporary. You should adumbrate the points which represent the sine qua non of your analysis.”
A letter sent to school that is high warning them of this 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 will be a buildup of fat deposits in the inner walls associated with arteries. This problem can lessen or cut off the flow of blood within the arteries serving the main organs associated with body. This will probably lead to poor health.”
Both in examples above, the language which is used is unfamiliar to the readers. As a result, the message loses its impact.
Precise and Clear Language
The use of appropriate language is a matter that is tricky this is of words is relative and situational. Put differently, words may be interpreted in numerous ways by each person in various situations. Because of this good reason, it’s important to choose language which will be as precise and clear as you are able to. The greater amount of precise and one that is clear usage of language becomes, the fewer the sheer number of possible interpretations for a message. Think about the following words. What value that is numerical you assign every single of these? If something is “probable what percentage for the right time does it occur? P>
Would other folks assign the value that is same these words as you did? In fact, the range of values varies greatly because these terms are relative: they are able to mean things that are different different people in various situations. How could one be much more precise in his/her use of these terms?
Consider the examples below. Realize that these terms may differ widely within the meaning to people that are different. The easiest way to make use of such relative terms, then, is to compare them to something concrete and “known” to your reader. As an example: “Is that Acura an expensive car?” is the best answered with a comparison: “Compared to that Honda resource, the Acura is expensive. Compared to that Lexus, it really is inexpensive.”
Consider the examples that are following. Note the potential confusion or ambiguity during 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 in the classroom but political habits on campus try not to appear to benefit from such labor.
(4) He’s an interesting individual.
(5) it is hard to estimate how many people affected by AIDS.
Each of the following are actual headlines printed in newspapers. Notice their double meaning.
(1) Include your children when Baking Cookies
(2) Safety Experts Say School Buss Passengers must be Belted
(3) Bank Drive-in Window Blocked by Board
(4) Killer Sentenced to Die for Second amount of time in 10 years
(5) Eye Drops Off Shelf
Simply speaking, it is wise to imagine carefully regarding the range of words and their interpretations that are potential. To communicate effectively, precise and clear language is essential.