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Straying Off The Point.

Inclusion of irrelevant and unnecessary information can cause paragraphs to become over long and to lose focus. Such irrelevant information will cause your argument to lose force. Your reader will lose interest and the main thrust of your argument will be buried.

In the paragraph below, the irrelevant information is italicised. By removing the information there would be more space for relevant information.

Tim loves to go to India. He tries to go at least once a year. Last year he took his new rucksack, which is blue and white. His love of the country began during his first visit when he was seduced by the exotic sounds and smells. These days it is possible to buy a lot of exotic fruit, that has to be flown into the country in our supermarkets. He particularly enjoys travelling around the country's rail network where you get to see real Indian life. The trains in England are faster and cleaner but nowhere near as much fun. His favourite place in India is the Rajasthani desert, a beautiful landscape in the west of the country. Camels are found all over the desert and are often known as ships of the desert. Tim tries to go on a camel trek whenever he visits Rajasthan. Camels can be temperamental creatures and rather smelly too.

Below is a corrected version of the above paragraph with the irrelevant information removed.

Tim loves to go to India. He tries to go at least once a year. His love of the country began during his first visit when he was seduced by the exotic sounds and smells. He particularly enjoys travelling around the country's rail network where you get to see real Indian life. His favourite place in India is the Rajasthani desert, a beautiful landscape in the west of the country. Tim tries to go on a camel trek whenever he visits Rajasthan.

Test your ability to root out irrelevant information with this exercise.