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Adverbial Perils

Submitted by Jill Yoshikawa, Ed M, Partner of Creative Marbles Consultancy on October 21st, 2015

Very, greatly, really, extremely, strongly, deeply…the adverb can seem genuine and necessary for emphasis in a college essay, yet can actually have the opposite effect of watering down what is described.  Plus, the adverb can be an extraneous word in the precious word count of the college essay.  Yet, teenage college essay writers typically include multiple adverbs in their first drafts, as their written language corresponds with their spoken language, where every issue is of utmost importance.

Given the second nature of the adverb to teenage-speak, an editor can be key in helping recognize the unnecessary words to help revise the essay to meet the word count, without losing the meaning of the sentences.  The college essay writing process gives new meaning to, “Mean what you say and say what you mean.”

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