All writers (will have to) edit their prose, but (the) great writers edit (it) viciously, always trying to eliminate (words which are) ‘fuzz’ – (excess) words (which are not adding anything of value). Zinsser compares (the process of editing out) ‘fuzz’ to fighting weeds – you will always be slightly behind (because they creep in when you aren’t looking for them). One of my (pet hates) is (the word) ‘also’. (If you search and replace all instances (of this word) you will find you can live without it and your writing will improve (instantly). (Likewise the word)’very’.)
Let’s try that again:
All writers edit their prose, but great writers edit viciously. The point of editing is to eliminate ‘fuzz’, or excess words which don’t add value. Zinsser compares removing ‘fuzz’ to fighting weeds – you will always be slightly behind. Two examples of fuzz are ‘also’ and ‘very’. Work at keeping them out of your text and your writing will improve.
"Content-free words are indicative of writing style...While two authors might use the same words to describe a similar event, they will use content-free "syntactic glue" to link their words in a different way...'Content is what makes us distinctive, but content-free words put us in different groups.'"