That’s A Lot Of Extra Unnecessary Words – Style #4

That's A Lot Of Extra Unnecessary WordsI had a count of 127 errors in writing Style. If you missed a previous blog, you can click on the purple link here that is crossed out to see that blog post.

Within STYLE are the following issues I had in my story:

1. Unclear Antecedent .
2. Capitalization at the start of a sentence .
3. Incorrect Spacing .
4. Incorrect Spacing with punctuation .
5. Incorrect verb form .
6. Inflated Phrase
7. Wordiness
8. Nominalization

I’m going to talk about Inflated Phrase and Wordiness. Let’s start with Inflated Phrase.

I only had one of these come up, yay!verb4

If I’m concerned about word count finding these little beauties will help. From three words down to two “By means of” can easily be replaced with “using.”

How is Inflated Phrase different from wordiness? An inflated Phrase is a group of words often used together that could easily be replaced by one more efficient words.  “a number of” can be replaced with “Many” or “some” or an actual number like “six.” Wordiness is the overuse of superfluous words. A wordy sentence may be grammatically correct, but they are too full and can be annoying to read. Simplify.

Let’s look at my Wordiness examples.


The correction offered is okay.

Two women were checking him out as he walked away oblivious.

Except for one thing. I personally like to avoid “ing.” So I would change it further.

Two women checked him out as he walked away oblivious.

This simplified the sentence greatly. It reduced word count too. Let’s look at another.

11 words

The suggestion is okay, and it brings the sentence down to 9 words.

Getting too close to someone like Jim was dangerous.

Once again it is an “ing” issue for me. Sometimes an “ing” word is necessary, but I rely on them too much, and they become a “Filter Word” of sorts. For this sentence, I would keep the “ing” word. It works, and I like how it reads. I would, however, change one more word. “Was”

Getting too close to someone like Jim is dangerous.

It’s a small thing but keeping flow is important. I often swap was and is, it’s okay but for this sentence ‘is’ works better since it’s not a ‘past’ issue it’s a current or potential issue.

My advice about inflated phrases or wordiness:

Cutting unnecessary words out or replacing them with more efficient words will strengthen your writing and tighten up the sentence. It will give the reader a more pleasant experience. 


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11 thoughts on “That’s A Lot Of Extra Unnecessary Words – Style #4

  1. There are a few authors I can think of off the top of my head that would benefit from this piece. Great post, Sheryl. Quite informative considering I had no idea there was a such thing as an inflated phrase.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Nominalization – Style #5 | I wrote a book. Now what?

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