Have you ever wondered if something you've written is actually being comprehended by the person reading it?
Whether you're aiming for a wide audience or a more technical crowd, the readability level of your prose is a useful gauge to see if your writing is where it's supposed to be.
But how do you test readability? This web tool may be just what you need.
The Hemingway Editor is a free online editor that can help you fine-tune your prose. It analyzes your writing and based on the length of your sentences and the complexity of your phrases, it will give it a readability score.
It will then offer you suggestions to make your writing clearer and more understandable to your target audience.
Why do you want to use Hemingway?
Hemingway looks for these common writing issues:
- Lengthy sentences
- Complex phrases and words
- Excessive adverbs
- Excessive use of the passive voice
Based on these factors, it then gives you a Readability Grade. This score indicates the minimum school grade level required to understand your writing. The lower the grade level, the more people can comprehend it easily.
For example, if you're aiming for something that kids will understand, aim for Grade 4 or 5. If you're writing for the average American, then aim for Grade 8 - 10. It's really an interesting way to assess your writing.
Hemingway will also give you suggestions on how to improve your readability grade including shortening complex sentences, getting rid of adverbs and passive voice sentences plus the use of simpler words.
How to use Hemingway's online editor
Ready to check your writing level?
Just paste your text at hemingwayapp.com and the site will assess its readability. Is your writing accessible to 5th graders or is it too complex that only college-level geeks can understand it? Hemingway will tell you! You can also click the Cool Site button below.
(By the way, according to Hemingway, this whole article is Grade 7.)