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Redundancy and Wordiness in Writing

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Redundancy and Wordiness in Writing. Some Famous or Infamous Examples of Redundancy. "I haven\'t committed a crime. What I did was fail to comply with the law." - David Dinkins, New York City Mayor, answering accusations that he failed to pay his taxes. .

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Some Famous or Infamous Examples of Redundancy

"I haven\'t committed a crime. What I did was fail to comply with the law."

- David Dinkins, New York City Mayor, answering accusations that he failed to pay his taxes.

"We\'re going to turn this team around 360 degrees."

- Jason Kidd, upon his drafting to the Dallas Mavericks

"China is a big country, inhabited by many Chinese."

     - Former French President Charles De Gaulle

"I\'m for abolishing and doing away with redundancy."

      - J. Curtis McKay of the Wisconsin State Elections Board

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A little advice from our friend, William Strunk Jr., author of Elements of Style

Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts. This requires not that the writer make all his sentences short, or that he avoid all detail and treat his subjects only in outline, but that every word tell.

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Shaking the Redundancy

Eliminate Unnecessary Adverbs

Really, Very, Quite, Extremely, Severely, Truly

John has been quite ill for a really long time.

John has been ill for a long time.

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Eliminate or Replace Meaningless Adjectives

Good, Nice, Bad, Okay, Important, Significant

Suzy is a good teacher who makes a significant impact on her students and faculty.

Suzy is a talented teacher who makes an impact on her students and faculty.

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Trimming the Fat

Before

After

At the present time

Now

Because

Due to the fact that

Midnight

12 midnight

In my opinion, I believe

I believe

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Trimming the Fat

(Cont.)

After

Before

In the event that

If

Although

In spite of the fact that

Near

In the vicinity of

Until

Until such time as

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Writing Concise Sentences

Examples:

All things considered, it seems like the new tax cut imposed by the administration will without a doubt make the wealthy wealthier and the poor poorer. When the administration’s new tax cut is passed, the children living in poverty will be affected the worst.

The new tax cut imposed by the administration will undoubtedly make the wealthy wealthier and the poor poorer. Consequently, children living in poverty will be severely affected.

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Avoid Expletive Constructions

There is/are it is

There are over three thousand students attending College of the Siskiyous. It is these students who pay the salaries of the teachers.

Over three thousand students attend College of the Siskiyous. These students pay the teachers’ salaries.

Using these phrases will put your reader to…

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How many times do I have to repeat myself???

Michael Jordanwas the best basketball player ever. Jordanwas slam dunk master.

Basketball star Michael Jordan was the best basketball player ever and slam dunk master.

John found the job to be easy, and Jen also thought it was simple. Mike completed the job without difficulty too.

John, Jen, and Mike found the job to be easy.

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The

End!

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