Smaller: Use contractions as often as possible (I'm vs. I am)

I cut down the length of my story wherever possible. Less is always more. As my friend Matt Sullivan pointed out, using contraction can really help you with this.

Google defines contractions as "the process of becoming smaller."

In grammar, it means combining two words into one.

For a more detailed answer, GCF Learn Free says, "A contraction is a word made by shortening and combining two words. Words like can't (can + not), don't (do + not), and I've (I + have) are all contractions. People use contractions in both speaking and writing."

This is especially important in dialogue, as most people will unconsciously use contractions wherever they can. 

Think about it, do you say, "I will see you later" or "I'll see you later"?

Try a couple more just to prove it:

  • You are = You're
  • I am = I'm
  • It is = It's
  • I will = I'll
  • We will = We'll
  • Would have = Would've
  • That is = That's
  • What is = What's
You get the point.

I often miss using contractions during the first draft, so I'll go back later and search the list below and replace two words with a contraction wherever possible.

Use the full strings between the quotes including the spaces. Most programs have a find option (under Edit > Find) which is what I use.

Good luck and keep it short! :)


P.S. - If this helped, please support me by reading my free webcomic halfwing, thanks!

P.P.S. - Please let me know if there are more I should add to the list in the comments below!

Search terms for using contraction:

  • " are"
  • " am"
  • " is"
  • " will"
  • " have"


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