When a writer consistently uses unnecessary “to be” verbs, the writing can sound dull and lifeless. Flat, wordy writing may cause the reader to lose interest. As a writer learns to substitute stronger, more expressive verbs for “to be” verbs, the enlivened writing is likely to hold the reader’s interest more effectively.
Weak: He is a student who is intelligent and confident. He is always completing assignments on time.
Stronger: The intelligent, confident student always completes assignments on time.
Weak: It was difficult to get out of bed at 6:00 a.m. each morning.
Stronger: The student faced the difficulty and got out of bed at 6:00 a.m. each morning.
Weak: Bill is going to start bringing all of his books to the group session for studying.
Stronger: Bill decided to bring all of his books to the group study session.