A writing quote for you this week:

“The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do.” – Thomas Jefferson

What do you think? (Bear in mind that Thomas Jefferson was a draftsman of the U.S. Declaration of Independence, so we shouldn’t take his advice lightly!)

Thomas Jefferson

Have you ever read a book/article that started to get tedious? That could have said the same thing in half as many words? I know I have (and also listened to half-hour sermons that could easily have got the point over in ten minutes, hehe!).

Stories that grip readers keep the action and the pace going. Part of that, is, of course, the characters, the setting, the plot, and the quality of the writing. BUT, another part is cutting out words that don’t need to be there.

I know, I’ve said this all before! But, as Paul said to the Philippians (when talking about rejoicing in the Lord, I admit) “It is no trouble for me to write the same things to you again, and it is a safeguard for you.” 🙂 OK, I took that right out of context. But you get the point. And now you see how I’ve wittered on, wasted words and made you skim? Hehe.

So, here’s an exercise for you this week. Check back over your work in progress, copy and paste 500 words of it into a new document, and see how many words you can cut. “Very good” – could you change that to excellent? “just going” – could that be just “going”? 🙂 Do the exercise, do it now, and let me know how many words you cut.

Look forward to hearing from you in the comments below, on our facebook page, or via email. However you get in touch, always lovely to hear from you!

Janet WilsonPeace and grace to you,


P.S. I might even give a prize for the biggest cutter. 😉

Two words or one?
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