How to make articles fluent – and easy to read

 

Our online courses emphasise the need for short sentences. They are easier to read, especially when readers are busy, or are looking at an article on screen.

But the course also stresses the need to achieve fluency, by writing as you speak.

You can find that using very short sentences can disrupt the fluency, especially if they are used in succession, or if they make up a significant proportion of the copy.

They can make the copy sound staccato … a bit like reading Spot the dog: ‘Here’s Spot. Spot has the ball. Spot chases the ball …’

Imagine you’re speaking to a friend. What sounds better:

‘It’s been a really hard day and I’m worn out! I’m thinking of having some me-time at the wine bar tonight, if you fancy a night out.’

Or:

‘It’s been a really hard day. I’m worn out. I’m thinking of having some me-time. We can go to the wine bar. Do you fancy a night out?’

To me, the second version sounds snappy – almost aggressive. It lacks natural flow.

So writers need to achieve a balance between short sentences and maintaining overall fluency.

See our online courses