Re: Need a little help in wording

Subject: Re: Need a little help in wording
From: Lauren <lauren -at- writeco -dot- net>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Sun, 25 Dec 2011 14:51:02 -0800

On 12/24/2011 5:24 PM, William Sherman wrote:

Thanks and Merry Christmas.

My family celebrated Christmas yesterday and I'm giving myself a reprieve from any other festivities for a bit. Thinky stuff relaxes me.

Diversified in this sentence:

The most diversified adaptation that plants have are their leaves which can do amazing things such as capture water, change colors, and act as the fingerprint of the plant.

This sentence seems like its capturing some complex details about plants, so it would seem that most changes to the sentence could risk changing the meaning. There is the assertion of "diversified adaptation" and the details of what leaves do. I favor simplifying the sentence by isolating the complexity. This can even become two sentences for lower grade readers by replacing "which," in my example, with a sentence break and "Plant leaves" to start the next sentence.

"A plant's most diversified adaptation is its leaves, which can do amazing things, such as capture water, change colors, and act as the fingerprint of the plant."

Herbivorous in this sentence:

Just like plants, animals have specialized adaptations to help them survive the ever-changing challenges of nature. Some examples of adaptations that animals have are - herbivorous animals like horses or cows have flat teeth to help them grind up grasses;

That second sentence lost a little bit of traction, didn't it?

The first sentence seems fine. I hope there are three or more examples for the second sentence. Since you are discussing the adaptions, each list item should begin with the adaptation, rather than the animal that has the adaptation.

"Examples of adaptations that animals have are: flat teeth for herbivorous animals like horses and cows to help them grind up grasses; ..."

Diversified in this sentence:

Lungs help animals to breath on land while other animals use gills to breath under water.

Finally, the most diversified physical characteristics of many animals are their feathers,

That one inspires a "huh?" moment.

The sentence really needs to focus on what is "diversified." Is it the "physical characteristics," the animals that possess diversification of physical characteristics, or feathers. And what is the role of "many animals"? Is it the case that many animals have a most diversified characteristic of feathers, while some animals do not? Do those animals have a least diversified characteristic of feathers?

Perhaps, this will help...

"Feathers are probably the most diversified physical characteristic found in animals..."



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Need a little help in wording: From: William Sherman

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