Friday, August 14, 2009

Write Tight by William Brohaugh

Here's a new addition to my Writer's Bookshelf.

"Write Tight" - Say Exactly What You Mean with Precision and Power."

William Brohaugh's book is an excellent choice for anyone who is interested in improving the quality of his or her writing. I bought it on the advice of a critique partner and it has become one of my most utilized references on writing.

"The Elements of Style" by William Strunk Jr advises: "Omit needless words. Vigorous writing is concise." Brohaugh's book tells you exactly how to do it. Concise writing does not mean use all short sentences. It does mean that you should make every word count. Be clear. If your readers can't figure out what you're saying they may decide it's not worth the effort to continue.

"Write Tight" addresses redundancy and overwriting. Readers are given instruction on how to create better sentences and trim the fat - all those unnecessary words. The tips are invaluable. Trash empty modifiers such as "very," "really," "usually," "generally," "basically" and "actually." Use a single word to convey a phrase. "The writer with ambition" becomes "The ambitious writer." Lose empty transitions such as "and," "however," "well," "so." Eliminate the "deadwould." Don't be pretentious. Overkill is wordy, irritating and boring. Avoid the cliché and standardized phrases. Advice, techniques, specific strategies, exercises and tests help you check your own writing. Make your writing more effective. "Write Tight" is a must have for writers of all genres.


Foreword: Write Tight or Else by Lawrence Block
Introduction: A Tight Fit Into Today's World
The Four Levels of Wordiness and How to Tackle Them
Sixteen Types of Wordiness and How to Trim Them
Prewriting Tight
Testing Your Writing for Flab
The Danger Signs of Wordiness
Exercises for Developing Your Awareness of Concision
Reducing the Mental Length of Your Manuscript
Nonverbal Streamlining
How Tight is too Tight
Putting it all Together: Write Light
Tips for Trimming During Manuscript Revision
Shave and a Haircut and a Few Bits
Bibliography, sources and an appendix of redundant phrases.

Publisher: Sourcebooks, Inc.; 1 edition (September 1, 2007)
ISBN: 978-1402210518
Paperback: 240 Pages
Price: $14.95

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