Know When to Replace a Word

At some point, most writers find themselves stuck trying to choose the perfect word to complete a thought. Whether you think you finally found it or not, here are a few situations when you just need to choose again.

Unsure Spelling

Word Replacement

Very few people find themselves writing without a computer these days. However, if you end up taking notes for your boss or drafting a hand-written poem for your girlfriend and there is no spell check available, please consider using easy words. It is not the complexity of the words that makes your composition great, but rather the way you put them together.

Misspelled Words

If you’re not sure about the spelling of a particular word, just replace it with an easier one. There is always another way to say the same thing.

Baltasar Quote

Unsure Meaning

Just like spelling, if you’re not 100% sure of the meaning of a word, just replace it with one you know for sure.

Misused Words

(Check out Unscripted’s blog on Assure, Insure and Ensure.)

You get the idea. If you’re not sure how to use the word correctly, just pick a different one.

Clarity

Vague word choices can leave readers questioning your meaning and your overall writing. Don’t leave them in the dark. Proofread your work for clarity and replace any words that seem too vague.

Vague Words

These words can describe a myriad of things. Be more specific about your particular meaning. (Think: How many is “a few?”)

Simplicity

Don’t be afraid of “simple” words. Sometimes the easiest word is the best choice. Few manuscripts are less pleasant to read than those packed with over-complicated words. Too many multi-syllable or uncommon words in a row can add confusion and take away from the overall meaning of the sentence/paragraph/document.

Complicated Words

Of course, there are instances when complex words are the most appropriate. Just try not to cram your writing with too many of them at a time.

C.S. Lewis Quote

 

Contact Unscripted for help choosing the right word or phrase, or for any other type of editing assistance.

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