Style Part 4: Too Many Long Sentences

עודכן ב: 6 יונ 2018

Experts believe that the average sentence length should be between 15 and 20 words. This length allows your reader to absorb your ideas more easily. For example, the following sentence may be confusing to read because of its length:

My favorite place to visit is my grandparents’ house near the lake where we love to fish and swim, and we often take the boat out on the lake.

Breaking the sentence into two (or more) can make your writing clearer and more interesting.

My favorite place to visit is my grandparents’ house near the lake. We love to fish and swim there, and we often take the boat out on the lake.



Good writers usually mix longer sentences with shorter ones to make their writing more effective. You may even want to try a short sentence (or a single-word sentence) after a few long ones to help you to emphasize what you are saying.

Benjamin Franklin, who was one of America’s “founding fathers,” helped write the Declaration of Independence. He also invented many things such as bifocals and the Franklin stove, and he discovered electricity. Think about that discovery. Where would we be without electricity?

In the example above, the paragraph starts with long sentences and ends with short ones. This combination makes the paragraph more lively and effective. Compare it with the paragraph below, which is made up of only long sentences:

Benjamin Franklin, who was one of America’s “founding fathers,” helped write the Declaration of Independence. He also invented many things such as bifocals and the Franklin stove, and he discovered electricity, which became very important to modern life.

Which paragraph do you prefer?


Summary: It is a good idea to mix long sentences with short ones. A good combination of long and short sentences makes writing lively.


Next: Too Many Short Sentences. That's Bad. You know. Yeah, pretty bad.


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