8 to 10 — That’s Your Sentence Sweet Spot

You know those sentences that spill across your inbox emails changing subjects, adding facts, twisting and turning? Those run-on sentences that lose you after the first subject change or list of adjectives?

Your readers can take in 100 percent of an eight-word sentence and 80 percent of a 10-word sentence. After 12 to 15 words, those readers can no longer remember what you were saying at the beginning of a sentence by the time they reach the end of that sentence.

To defeat your run-ons:

Examine those commas. Try breaking the sentence there.

Do you use semi-colons? Cease and desist. Divide the sentence in two. (No one uses semi-colons correctly anyway.)

Check for redundancy. ‘Very unique’ and ‘really really important’ are just too too.

Go forth and shorten those sentences!

For more writing suggestions, check out this resource.