Eliminating Deadwood: Exercise 1

Beginning writers often repeat unnecessary words. However, redundancy can annoy readers.

Wordy: Dr. Fathiya, who is one of the most famous and well-known doctors in Oman, is a doctor who has carried out research on diseases such as cancer and diabetes. (Famous and well-known are redundant, as are doctor and physician.)

Concise: Dr. Fathiya, one of the most famous doctors in Oman, has carried out research on diseases such as cancer and diabetes.

One step in the editing process is to eliminate redundancy. Three ways to achieve more concise paragraphs are shown below.

  1. Delete redundant words.

Wordy: Mumps is a common childhood disease as is the disease measles.

Concise: Mumps is a common childhood disease as is measles.

2.     Substitute a pronoun.

Wordy: Dr. Hamed is a pediatrician. My brother is one of Dr. Hamedís patients.

Concise: Dr. Hamed is a pediatrician. My brother is one of his patients.

  1. Use an appositive.

Wordy: The nucleus is the information center of a cell. It consists of two major parts.

Concise: The nucleus, the information center of a cell, consists of two major parts.

Exercise: Use the frame to rewrite the paragraph so that it is more concise. When you are finished, send this page to your teacher.

Chemistry, which is when scientists study the properties of materials and which also includes the study of the changes that materials undergo, is important in peopleís everyday lives each day. In other words, the science of chemistry helps to explain and to give an explanation of why ice thaws and melts. In addition, it also describes how a battery generates and creates electricity. It even tells us why turn a different color so that they change to a different hue in the autumn.