Clear writing is always in fashion.

Here’s an eyeful for you…

Sustainability has merged with the term “green,” that used to refer mainly to environmental causes (most notably the “green” political parties in Europe and the US) especially over the past three years, so that it seems that “green” is the new “black.”

Phew! What a long sentence!

Not simply because it has many words. This sentence abounds with ideas:

  1. Merging sustainability with the term “green”
  2. environmental causes,
  3. political parties in Europe and the US, and
  4. ‘the new black.’

At school, we learn to speak one at a time. That way, every voice is heard. The above sentence is the written equivalent of four voices clamoring for attention. As a result, the reader may not understand the sentence’s main idea; sustainability merging with the term “green”.

Let’s start by assuming that the reader is already familiar with “green”. (Readers like to be credited for their intelligence.) Making this (very reasonable) assumption allows us to remove the middle describing segment:

Sustainability has merged with the term “green” so that it seems that “green” is the new “black.”

Now we’re getting down to a single idea.

Let’s cut away that cautious, half-hearted language ‘it seems’.

Sustainability has merged with the term “green” so that “green” is the new “black.”

Just one more step: can we assume most readers will understand the meaning behind ‘the new “black”‘?

If they have a background in design, it may be appropriate.

Just to be safe, let’s use more accessible and understandable wording while keeping the original meaning.

Sustainability has merged with the term “green” so that “green” has become trendy.

Finally, we’ll clean up the redundancy of “green” and “has”…
Since merging with the term “sustainability”, “green” has become trendy.

(Sigh of relief.) We’ve preserved the original meaning of the sentence while cutting away all the excess words. The sentence reads smoothly and still conveys its meaning.

As always, if we want to make our idea understood, we must write as clearly and cleanly as possible.
That’s a fact that will never go out of style.