The wisdom of Donald Murray:"Brevity comes from selection, not compression."Me: Prune the dead limbs, then shake out the dead leaves.That is so true. I think when we talk about inch counts for stories -- I'm mostly thinking about projects or enterprise pieces, but it really holds for any story -- reporters can interpret that as quality reduction: If I could write 10 more inches, or 20, or 30, my story would be that much better. But if I can only write x-amount, my story's only going to be so good.
— Roy Peter Clark (@RoyPeterClark) September 19, 2012
There are reasons to write longer, sometimes. But Murray's wisdom, as Clark notes, tells us it's not about the space you use to say something, it's about what you say in that space.