BlogHow to Use ProWritingAidEverything You Need to Know About ProWritingAid's Diction Report

Everything You Need to Know About ProWritingAid's Diction Report

How to Use The Diction Report

The Diction Report helps you avoid unnecessarily complicated writing by analyzing your word selection and sentence construction.

Contents:
  1. How to Use The Diction Report
  2. Fix Vague Words
  3. Use Simple Phrases

How to Use The Diction Report

There are hundreds of rules to improve your language built into the ProWritingAid algorithm. Like most rules, each of these will have exceptions so use your judgement when choosing to accept or reject ProWritingAid's suggestion.

The Diction Report will highlight those sentences that are constructed in an awkward way so that you can reword them and make them easier to understand.

The Diction Report also brings attention to vague and abstract words that you can improve to make your writing more clear.

Diction Report Side Bar

Fix Vague Words

Vague words lack the clarity your readers want. Did you describe your protagonist as a tall girl? Tall is subjective: it means something completely different to a short person than it does to a tall person. You need to be more specific.

Words like more, poor, good, excellent, some, large, better, or considerable are all ambiguous. What I view as excellent may be very different from your own understanding.

Use Simple Phrases

When it comes to writing, less is more. Make every word count. If it's not essential, cut it. Too often when writers are trying to sound authoritative, they choose the wordy ways of saying something simple. Why write “has the ability to” when you can write “can”? You’re just using more words to say the same thing, which actually makes your writing much less clear.

Some other examples include:

  • at this point in time ➡ now

  • due to the fact that ➡ because

  • in order to ➡ to

  • in the event that ➡ if

  • prior to the start of ➡ before

  • has been found to be ➡ is

  • a sufficient amount of ➡ enough

  • at such time as ➡ when

  • for the reason that ➡ because

  • in close proximity to ➡ near

  • it is our opinion that ➡ we think

  • serves the function of being ➡ is

  • in the near future ➡ soon

Look through your writing for a simpler way of saying the same thing.

Have you tried ProWritingAid's Diction Report yet? What are you waiting for?


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Have you tried  ProWritingAid  yet? What are you waiting for? It's the best tool for making sure your copy is strong, clear, and error-free!
Hayley Milliman
Content Lead

Hayley is thrilled to be ProWritingAid's Content Lead, as it gives her an excuse to think deeply about words every single day. Prior to joining ProWritingAid, Hayley spent a number of years as an elementary school teacher, which was a crash course in learning how to entertain an indifferent audience. These days, she puts her storytelling skills to use writing blog articles and working on her first novel.

When Hayley isn't hunched over her keyboard, you can find her figure skating at the ice rink or hiking with her dog.

She is the co-author of the book Museum Hack's Guide to History's Fiercest Females (which was an Amazon bestseller) and How to Build Your Author Platform on a Shoestring.

This article doesn't address instances of reported vague words and phrases.
By mbristow531 on 09 August 2020, 06:34 PM
Thanks for the feedback! I'm not sure exactly what you mean - would you mind dropping us a line at hello@prowritingaid.com so that I can offer some suggestions more tailored to your needs? :)
By writersneed2 on 11 August 2020, 08:29 PM
What do you mean by a vague word?
By brigettemyburgh on 06 September 2020, 06:50 AM

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