Thursday 15 December 2016

Editing: set vs. sat and rise/stand/wake (up)

For the final editing tips of 2016, I thought I'd look at sat vs. set and the pesky little 'up' that gets tagged onto verbs unnecessarily.

Set vs. Sat

If you are placing something down you use set. If you, yourself, are taking a seat, use sat. Here are some examples to clarify.

He set the book upon the table.

He sat on the table.

Rise/Stand/Wake (up)

There are several verbs to which writers often wish to add 'up'; however, in most cases it is unnecessary and should be removed.

He rose up  sb.  He rose
He stood up sb. He stood
He woke up sb. He woke

Ask yourself if you would ever say 'down' instead. He rose down? Clearly not. Therefore you don't need the 'up'. An exception is stand, because you can stand down; however, this has an entirely different sense and if you simple say 'stand' everyone will assume 'up'.

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