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Using Precise Language

More on Using Precise Language

Many memoir writers are under the impression that you need to have an extensive vocabulary to write. An extensive vocabulary can only help you–if by “extensive” you mean many precise words—not just “big” ones. More important is using precise language.

Precise words are specific

Precise words are specific and not vague and ineffective like nice, awful, big, OK. “She was nice” is vague. “She understands different points of view” is specific.

“He was awfully big” is vague. You might write instead: “My father measured six foot five and weighed 275 pounds.” Now that is using precise words! [Free Membership required to read more. See below. ]

Many memoir writers are under the impression that you need to have an extensive vocabulary to write. An extensive vocabulary can only help you–if by “extensive” you mean many precise words—not just “big” ones. More important is using precise language.

Precise words are specific

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Precise words are specific and not vague and ineffective like nice, awful, big, OK. “She was nice” is vague. “She understands different points of view” is specific.

“He was awfully big” is vague. You might write instead: “My father measured six foot five and weighed 275 pounds.” Now that is using precise words! [Free Membership required to read more. See below. ]

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