You can tighten up your writing by getting rid of unneeded words.

Here are a few examples:

  • Advance planning. Just say planning. Isn’t all planning done in advance?
  • Past experience. Past adds nothing to your sentence.
  • Absolutely essential. It’s either essential or it isn’t. What’s the difference between essential and absolutely essential?
  • Predict in advance. We all know it’s easier to predict the past, but aren’t all predictions about the future? Cut in advance.
  • We worked together on a joint project. If you worked together, it was a joint project. Joint can certainly go. How about getting rid the whole phrase, on a joint project?
  • On a weekly basis. Just say weekly. Same applies to daily, monthly, and yearly.
  • Knowledge and information. Make up your mind. Just one of these words will do.
  • Totally unrealistic. Delete totally. It adds nothing.
  • Past alumni. Past alumni? As opposed to future ones?
  • Joint partnerships. As opposed to partnerships with yourself? Surely not!
  • Each and every. Use only one of those words.
  • Added bonus. There would be trouble if there were subtracted bonuses in your pay check!
  • General consensus. Remove the military rank. Consensus is fine.
  • Total number. Remove number.
  • Refer back. Use refer.
  • First and foremost. First alone is better.

When you write, less is almost always more. Be ruthless with those extra words!

There are many more words that add nothing except keystrokes for the writer and more time for the reader! Can you think of more examples? Write them in the comments — we’d love to hear from you.