I’m dissecting the article Hunting Down the Pleonasm, by Allen Guthrie, using it as a cattle prod to search for little nasties in my manuscript. Yep, you can join in the fun, too. Let’s take a looksee at topic #13
13: Don’t confuse the reader. If you write something you think might be unclear, it is. Big time. Change it or cut it.
I admit that I’ve written things that betas have said are confusing. I brushed off their comments, and then when the second person was confused I shook my head..because, sfter all, I explained it RIGHT THERE. Right?
Yeah, and then the third beta comes along, and you have to suck it up and admit that you might not be as brilliant as you thought you were.
Yeah, I hate that too.
But Guthrie makes a good point. It you read something in your first draft, and you wonder if it might be confusing… just take for granted that it is and re-write it. If you have an inkling that something needs extra work, you are probably right. Better to fix it now than look like a big silly head when your beta readers get a hold of it.