Cover-Letter Writing Tips about Verbs

The rules of good writing certainly apply to cover letters — and resumes for that matter. Here’s a tip from WRITER’S WEB WATCH (published by WritingThatWorks) covering four verb issues to watch out for.

To assess how much work a manuscript [or cover letter] needs, run your finger down the page and check only the verbs. Do they summarize the content? If not, they need work. Go through again and mark

  1. Passive voice,
  2. “To be” verbs,
  3. Verbs (particularly “make” or “do”) followed by a noun derived from a verb (e.g., “make a decision” rather than “decide”),
  4. Verbs dependent on adverbs (e.g., “went quickly” rather than “hurried” or “raced”).

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