Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Defog Your Writing

Looking for a quick way to help defog your writing? Want it clear and crisp? 

Then delete it is unless it refers to something mentioned earlier. It is constructions tangle sentences, delay meaning, encourage passive verbs, and hide responsibility.

Other foggies to avoid are there is and there are.

See the difference from a simple deletion or slight rewording:

Foggy: It is my understanding that the study includes large companies.
Better: I understand that the study includes large companies.

Foggy: There are some provisions that cannot be negotiated.
Better: Some provisions cannot be negotiated.

Really Foggy: It is recognized that as the program matures, there are likely to be changes in task definitions and priorities.
Better: We recognize that as the program matures, task definitions and priorities are likely to change.

Blogging with Bliss blogger, Dr. Adrienne Escoe, is the president and owner of Escoe Bliss Professional Resources.


  1. I'd clean up the last example even further by getting rid of the word "that" and perhaps instead of "are likely to change," say "will change" or "will likely change." Just my two cents.

  2. Great point, John! Thank you for your feedback!
    For our last example we now have:
    Really Foggy

  3. Great reminders! Thank you for including clear examples.