change, evidence-based practice, methods, nursing, professionalism, research



  1. Olson, DaiWai M.

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The length of professional content is out of control. While looking at an email, a friend recently said, "I don't care. I pretty much just ignore it at this point." He clicked delete and the email disappeared. This was one of the many emails meant to educate us about a change. The writer meant well. There was a clear effort to ensure that they covered every possible outcome. But for busy professionals with only a few moments to spare, long emails go largely unread. So do long articles.

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I'm not sure when we lost our way. I think it may have been when we switched from pens to keyboards. Paper used to be precious. With fewer resources, mistakes were more costly. Yes, you could try and hide some of your mistakes with Wite-Out. However, that only really worked for 1 letter, or maybe 1 word. Perhaps, the motivation to get it right the first time kept us in check.


It is important to include relevant content. I am not advocating that we stop sharing information. I am not advocating that we leave out important data. I am advocating that we recognize that readers are just like us. We have long known that most humans don't read the fine print.1 I also think we have long known that most nurses and doctors don't read everything written in a very long article.2 For this problem, there are 2 possible solutions. We can either force people to read more, or adapt our writing to meet their needs.


As you consider your next Journal of Neuroscience Nursing submission, I encourage you to think about your goals. Concise writing is better. Short sentences are easier to read. The aim of writing is to share your wisdom, knowledge, and insight. Everyone benefits from ideas that are expressed in a way that allows the reader to fully understand the content.


Finally, I must confess-I am as bad as anyone else. I revised the above paragraphs at least 2 dozen times. It was easy. I used copy and paste to move paragraphs. The delete key allowed me to make multiple changes. Had I not confessed, you would never have known. I used the double-click feature to replace long words with short words. As I look at this page, the white space screams out "use me," and I have to fight the urge to add more content.




1. Bakos Y, Marotta-Wurgler F, Trossen DR. Does anyone read the fine print? Consumer attention to standard-form contracts. J Legal Stud. 2014;43(1):1-35. doi: [Context Link]


2. Olson DM. Agreed-upon lies. J Neurosci Nurs. 2019;51(6):275. doi: [Context Link]