Friday, April 2, 2010

An unnecessary word?

I DO THIS ALL the time. Here's the sentence: Investigators are still trying to figure out exactly what went wrong.

Is there a difference between "exactly what went wrong" and "what went wrong?" Probably not.

I'm always thinking about how to pare a story down. But don't worry; I don't want to get rid of the good stuff, just the unnecessary.

I GOT THIS COMMENT on an edited sentence from yesterday's blog:

Heather Awad said...
       Sometimes it's just one word that makes all the difference.

Truer words were never spoken. Sometimes one word makes all the difference.

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1 comment:

  1. Tom - I think "exactly what went wrong" makes it more specific, leaving nothing out. "What went wrong" just by itself can be vague or less detailed in explanation, as "exactly" is not required. Either way though, I think the reader will interpret the same, but for additional emphasis, "exactly" is added.