Stop sounding smart. Start sounding clear

A terrible mistake that several amateur writers make (myself included) is to sound smart rather than sound clear.

In a bid to sound smart, several writers employ arcane verbiage and contort their sentences in a manner that leaves their hapless readers thoroughly befuddled. Did you see what I did there?

The most effective way to sound smart is dig deep and say exactly what you want to say. Written communication doesn’t come naturally to us. The mere act of getting your mysterious thoughts across to another person via squiggly characters on a page is challenging enough. Unusual vocabulary and complicated sentences is akin to placing speed breakers on an already bumpy road.

Always put clarity ahead of smartness.

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