The Crabby Lady from the Complaints Department stopped by this morning. “There are just way too many words.” she griped. “They are coming at me from every direction. Phone calls, emails, text messages, internet, radio, TV… You know, people blame all the extreme weather on global warming, but I know what is causing it – all those words whizzing through the airwaves…”
Her tirade stopped as suddenly as it started. She realized she had used up most of her quota of words for the morning, and she still had a few to give to the weatherman if he forecast another day of high winds. She slapped a sticky note on my forehead, then marched back to the outer reaches of my mind.
The sticky note said, “Cut the crap. You are using too many words.” I shrugged off her stinging criticism, and opened my Google Reader. I follow lots of interesting blogs, and always look forward to seeing what other bloggers have to say. My Google Reader announced, “I’ve missed you. Where have you been for the past few days? Your absence means you have 145 unread feeds to read…” Whoa. Too many words.
One day away from my computer and I was snowed under. So I spent several hours picking my way through other peoples words, and came up with a few promises that I think the Crabby Lady can live with. Feel free to use any of them, because my Crabby Lady thinks some of you use way too many words too.
1. I have resigned from the WordPress Postaday 2011 Challenge. I don’t have the time nor topic ideas to churn out something worthy enough for you to read each day. That is not to say I won’t someday write a pithy post about breakfast cereal, but I will spare you from posts about how I have NOTHING to say. Leave that to Twitter.
2. I will Proofread what I write, and I will take out all the words that don’t add anything to the meaning. Most of my posts start out at around 700 words, and end up at about 500 words. If I have a very long story to tell you, I will make sure that each and every word adds content, and that it isn’t just a long post because I was too lazy to edit.
Writing is easy. All you have to do is cross out the wrong words.
3. I will do some Research before I express opinions on something. I will acquaint myself with at least the rudimentary facts about an issue or idea. Factless, regurgitated opinion is a waste of words.
4. Not everything I write about will be of Interest to everyone. Sometimes even The Car Guy isn’t interested, but I ignore that one small flaw in his character. But there will be one little bit of truth or wisdom in every post I write… unless I accidentally edit it out. Sometimes I cross out a few right words too.
(And this is what 501 words looks like.)