What if everything you read was up to 30% shorter and more easily understood? What if everything you wrote was up to 30% shorter and more easily understood? Would that be a skill worth developing? Would your employer or clients notice if your work improved this much? Would their opinion of your skills change if they did? Reducing the number of words in a text without losing information is easier than you might think. Reducing or eliminating nominalisations (verbs turned into nouns or adjectives) and the passive voice can substantially improve the clarity of the text as well as shortening it. In this article, I review these two grammatical constructions, describe their strengths and weaknesses, tell how to recognise them, and explain when you can change them to improve your writing.