DIVERSITY, VARIETY AND RANGE

One element of writing that is actually quite enjoyable to deal with is finding different words.

Why is this necessary?

Well, you have a think about it, dear reader. You’re cruising along, taking in a piece of text, and then you realise; the poor writer has used the same word three or four times in a couple of paragraphs.

Your brain starts to go numb. Repetition will do that to you.

The good thing is that awareness of the need for wording diversity is – these days – being built at secondary school. Senior students study persuasive writing, and as part of this they build ‘word banks’ in order to expand their relevant vocabulary.

Everyone can – and should – do this if they are going to write consistently. Let’s take an example. You are working in a nursery and have to write a newsletter every so often. Spend a bit of time to create a document with alternative words for ‘plant’. Off the top of my head, you can use some of the following:

Foliage, greenery, vegetation, seedling, tree, shrub…and I am sure that there are many others. But these few can act as the building blocks to make writing life easier for you, as well as ensuring that reading is more enjoyable and interactive for your reader.

My rule of thumb is to not have the same distinctive word repeated within two paragraphs. I’ll either have a ‘word bank’ on standby, or a traditional dictionary/thesaurus; or even be ready to press ‘shift + f7’ (in Word) for a quick list of alternatives.

It is worth the effort, makes writing a bit more of an adventure, and helps to build your vocabulary strength. Enjoy!

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