Good writing is clear, concise, and coherent. Good writers read their papers with a critical eye, looking out for ambiguous or awkward phrases, for passive constructions that weaken their prose, for clichés, dangling modifiers, imprecise language, unclear pronoun references, and punctuation problems; in short, they hone their sentences to communicate most effectively the point they are trying to make.
Major problems with sentences
Try to avoid the to be verb with the past participle. Example: “The book was read.” Better: "I read the book."
Eliminate the use of the to be verb because it weakens prose. Example: “The book is shocking in its content.” Better: "The book's content shocks readers."
Avoid an unclear connection between the modifier (adjective, adverb, verbal phrase) and the noun it modifies. Example: “Reading the book, connections were made.” Better: "Reading the book, students made connections."
Be careful about imprecise or incorrect word use. Example: “This book had an encompassing affect on me.” Better: "This book had a profound effect on me."
The pronoun this should not be used on its own with no clear referent. Example: “This shows why reading the book was essential to the course.” Better: "This insight shows why reading the book was essential to the course."
The use of it is, there is/there are pushes the “real” subject further into the sentence. Example: “It is the book which taught me how to analyze literature.” Better: "The book taught me how to analyze literature."
Cliché is a trite, overused expression that does not add meaning. Example: “It goes without saying this was a good book.” Better: "This was a good book."
The use of extra adjectives, strings of noun phrases, or a combination of any of the above factors lead to wordiness. Example: “The seminal compilation of writing from the collection of documents concerning the intersection and determination of various aspects of inscribing reading into an environment was essential to the problematization of this analysis.” Better: "The anthology of reading pedagogy helped us critique our analysis."