So I’m driving to work the other day and a news report about the death of famed 50’s crooner and songwriter Frankie Laine comes on the radio.
A phrase jumps out. “In a prepared statement, the family said... .”
What’s the converse: an ”unprepared“ statement.
My colleague, style watchdog Scott Libin, wondered if an unprepared statement requires that ”the words would appear in random order.“
There seems no doubt: prepared statement is redundant. Limit it to ”statement.“ You lose none of the meaning and trim your story by a word.
Stay alert for redundancies in your prose, omitting those speed bumps that distract a listener/viewer/reader.
p.s.I initially described Scott Libin as ”ever-vigilant language watchdog.“ But watchdogs, by their very nature, are expected to be ever-vigilant, as opposed to asleep at the switch. Out went ”ever-vigilant,“ The meaning’s preserved while the story is a two-word hybrid shorter.
You can listen to samples from Laine's "Greatest Hits" album on this amazon.com page.