Submission Guidelines: Word Count – 2000
Beth’s word count: 2526
Submission Guidelines: Word Count – 800
Beth’s word count: 972
Yes, I am wordy. And, yes, I have to do a great deal of editing. Not on blog posts, although I probably should. And I’m sure there are certain people who wish I was forced to adhere to a minimum word count in my emails. As for Twitter? I’m not yet ready to subject myself to the challenge of sticking to 140 characters.
One minor way to reduce my word count is to delete the word “that” whenever I’ve used it unnecessarily. Which I do.
Rule of thumb: If you read over your sentence and it makes sense without the word “that” – remove it.*
(I thought this was a good example because it uses “that” twice.)
I never knew that he felt that way. (Get rid of the first “that.”)
I never knew he felt that way. (The sentence makes sense minus the first “that” but the second “that” remains because it would NOT make sense if it read: “I never knew he felt way.”)
Are you still with me?
I don’t remember who gave me this advice but I’ve been using it ever since. AND IT DRIVES ME CRAZY. Instead of waiting for the editing process, I’m forever pausing to check my use of “that.”
Why am I sharing this with you? Well, I thought it an interesting tidbit to pass along. I’m also wondering if anyone else will now become as obsessive in regard to using the word “that.”
Let me know. ;)
*For a proper grammatical explanation re: the use of “that” – don’t rely on me – check elsewhere...read all about pronouns, clauses, etc.