I hate top ten lists…

…but I wish I had written this one. Here’s a tidbit:

1 Write shorter.

Why it matters. Readers are impatient and will give up on your blog post, email, or document before you’ve made your point. Every extra word makes readers antsy.

Why you write long. It’s far easier to type than to edit. So people just keep adding things.

How to fix it. Edit. Delete your “warming up” text and start with the main point. Cull extraneous detail and repetition. Work as if each word you eventually publish or send will cost you $10. I’ve often had writers who were outraged that I had redlined two-thirds of what they wrote . . . only to read the shortened doc and respond “that’s so much more powerful.”

Go read the whole post. Then post the chart on the wall near your desk. I did.

 

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