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Rub Out the Paste

For the following exercise, underline the power words, bracket the paste, and tally each. Rewrite the sentences, eliminating as much paste as possible and making any changes necessary to strengthen each sentence.

1: In the event that the building loses power and the lights go off during working hours, all employees are instructed to remain seated at their desks and await the instructions of the department manager who is assigned to supervise the activity of the department.

____ Number of Power Words ____ Number of Paste Words

__________________________________________________________

__________________________________________________________

A: [In the event that] the building loses power [and] the lights go off [during working hours, all] employees [are instructed to] remain seated [at their desks and] await the instructions [of the] department manager [who is assigned to supervise the activity of the department.]

_16_ Number of Power Words _28_ Number of Paste Words

The following is one way to rewrite the message:

If the lights go off during a power outage, remain seated and await instructions from your department manager.

2: I am sending this e-mail to all members of our association’s board of directors to notify each and every member of the board of directors that effective the first of the new year the board will meet every third Monday of each month for the purpose of discussing association business matters.

____ Number of Power Words ____ Number of Paste Words

__________________________________________________________

__________________________________________________________

A: [I am sending this e-mail to all members of our association’s board of directors to notify each and every member of the board of directors that] effective the first of the new year the board will meet [every] third Monday of each month [for the purpose of] discussing association business [matters.]

_19_ Number of Power Words _32_ Number of Paste Words

The following is one way to rewrite the message:

Effective January 1, the board will meet the third Monday of each month to discuss association business.

3: Per your e-mail directive of April 1: My understanding is that there is to be no more parking of employee cars in parking spots designated for visitors to the company, nor is there to be any further tolerance of healthy company workers parking their vehicles in spaces that have been designated for disabled persons.

____ Number of Power Words ____ Number of Paste Words

__________________________________________________________

__________________________________________________________

A: [Per your e-mail directive of April 1: My understanding is that] there is to be no more parking [of] employee cars in [parking] spots designated for visitors [to the company, nor is there to be any further tolerance of healthy company workers parking their vehicles in spaces that have been designated for] disabled persons.

_16_ Number of Power Words _38_ Number of Paste Words

The following is one way to rewrite the message:

Able-bodied employees are prohibited from parking in spaces designated for visitors and/or disabled drivers.




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