Now, now. Don’t get angry. Deal. Use writing techniques that convey your message and stay within the word limits. First and foremost, focus.

Additionally, poor writing habits can make your writing wordy and flabby; good writing techniques make it powerful and concise. To give your writing a healthy diet and exercise routine incorporate these techniques:

1) Minimize use of the passive voice.

• Flabby: Experience A has been complemented by experience B. (8 words)
• Lean: Experience B complements experience A. (5 words)

2) Use active, descriptive verbs.

• Obese: I was the one who made the decision… (8 words)
• Slender: I decided… (2 words)

3) Minimize use of the verb “to be” (Please note that I did not say “eliminate.”)

• Plump: She is a skillful negotiator. (5 words)
• Slim: She negotiates skillfully. (3 words)

4) Check whether you need the verb preceding an infinitive.

• Fat: She was able to fix… (5 words)
• Trim: She fixed… (2 words)

These few techniques will put your writing in shape, help you stay within those limits, and give you one less reason to curse your applications.

This article is one of the tips provided in Submit a Stellar Application: 42 Terrific Tips to Help You Get Accepted. Check out this instantly downloadable ebook for the other 41.

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