Do you find yourself starting a lot of sentences with the words ‘there is’? They are not the most exciting words in the language, and they often lead to unnecessarily complicated sentences. See if you can dream up some leaner, cleaner or more colourful ways to express yourself. The trick is often to identify the most important part of the sentence and start there instead. ‘There is a possibility that the results could change if the experiment were repeated under different conditions’ could be rewritten as ‘Repeating the experiment under different conditions might change the results.’ It’s clearer that way, and shorter too.

James McConnachie

10 January 2019