No one will be surprised, I suspect, to learn that I love words. There is no greater pleasure to me as an author than to find just the right way of saying something. In my book, Business Writing for Results, I write about The Principle of FURY, a tool that helps me in selecting specific words and phrases.
The word FURY is an acronym that stands for:
The word sponsorship is a better word choice than aegis, for example, even though it’s longer, unless your character is the sort of person to know and use a highfalutin word like sponsorship.
Unique words include technical terminology and industry jargon, as well as some common English words. Dog, for instance, is an example of a unique word in conversational English. No way would you refer to your dog as a canine, a mongrel, or a cur, except in special circumstances.
I like to add special words for texture and pacing—but not too many of them. Every couple of hundred words or so, I’ll make a point of adding a word that has a little pizzazz to it, like, in fact, pizzazz.
We all have favorite words and expressions, and I’m a believer in using them—not too much, but to give voice to my own style. My goal is to produce writing that sounds like me.
In other words, in my view, the best word is the one that’s most Familiar to your target readers unless the word in question is Unique, was selected to add Richness to the text, or is Your favorite. This tool is a handy way to make decisions about which words and phrases to use.