for a strong, fast pick-me-up
I just heard this on a major TV news bulletin.
Can you see what’s wrong with it?
Brisbane residents could be using a zip line to get from Kangaroo Point to the CBD within five years.
That’s right – it sounds as if the residents will get to the CBD within 5 years. A bloody slow zip line!
The problem is: the words within five years are “misplaced”. You need to put those words close to words they are meant to modify.
This wording is more precise:
Within five years Brisbane residents could be using a zip line to get from Kangaroo Point to the CBD.
I understand that to hook the attention of viewers, the writer would want to start a sentence with Brisbane residents.
In that case – save the within five years words for a separate sentence.
When I train writers at news organisations how to…
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