Essay Shortener: How to Make Your Paper Short

Writing guide
Posted on November 15, 2023

Writing essays can be a daunting activity, especially when you’re faced with strict word limits. Many students often find themselves in situations where their ideas and writing seem to overflow, resulting in papers that are way too long. But fret not, for there are strategies and tools that can help you trim down your text without sacrificing quality. Here, we will explore using an essay shortener while maintaining its essence and integrity.

Paraphrase to Shorten: Reducing Word Count Effectively

How to shorten my essay? Paraphrasing is a powerful tool in the writer’s toolkit, especially when shortening an essay. This technique involves the art of rephrasing sentences and ideas while retaining the original message. This skill reduces word count and injects variety into your writing. Let’s delve deeper into these paraphrasing tips with some practical examples:

  1. Understand the original content. Before embarking on paraphrasing, it’s essential to have a profound understanding of the original text. For instance, consider this original sentence from a scientific paper: “The experiment demonstrated a significant correlation between temperature and plant growth rates.”
  • Paraphrased version: “The research showed a notable connection between temperature and plant growth.”

Here, the essence of the original sentence remains intact, but the wording has changed, reducing the word count.

  1. Use synonyms. Synonyms can be a handy technique to rephrase sentences while preserving the original meaning. For instance, take this sentence from a literature review: “The main character’s decisions played a crucial role in the narrative’s turning point.”
  • Paraphrased version: “The protagonist’s actions were pivotal to the story’s climax.”

By replacing some phrases the sentence is effectively shortened and rephrased.

  1. Change sentence structure. Altering the structure of sentences can also contribute to successful paraphrasing. Consider the original sentence from a history essay: “The revolution had a profound impact on the nation’s social fabric.”
  • Paraphrased version: “The revolution greatly influenced the nation’s social fabric.”

The sentence structure has been changed in this paraphrased version, reducing the word count while maintaining the original meaning.

  1. Maintain clarity. While paraphrasing, it’s imperative to ensure that the reworded text remains clear and coherent. For example, consider this sentence from a technology article: “The critical security issues were effectively addressed through the software update.”
  • Paraphrased version: “The software update resolved the critical security issues.”

The paraphrased version maintains clarity by rearranging the elements of the sentence, ultimately shortening it.

  1. Cite sources. Providing proper citations is crucial if you’re paraphrasing someone else’s work. In academic writing, accurate citation is a cornerstone of intellectual integrity. For instance, if you are paraphrasing a passage from a book:
  • Original Passage: “The impact of climate change on polar bears is devastating. It threatens their natural habitat and food sources.”
  • Paraphrased version: “The consequences of climate change on polar bears are catastrophic, endangering their native environments and food supplies (Smith, 2022).”

In this example, the paraphrased version maintains the source’s message while crediting the original author, ensuring you are not guilty of plagiarism.

By applying these paraphrasing techniques with examples in mind, you can effectively shorten an essay to meet word limits or simply present your ideas more concisely. Paraphrasing allows you to communicate your thoughts clearly, concisely, and with the impact they deserve, respecting the original source’s message and ensuring good academic integrity.

Jacob Lee Top-10 Writer at

You must understand that shortening or extending the length of your essay just for the means of the word count is a bad strategy. The word count optimization must also be a content optimization.

9 Tips: How to Make an Essay Shorter

So, how to make an essay shorter? In essay writing, making your essay shorter while maintaining its quality is a valuable skill. Whether you’re dealing with strict word limits or simply want your ideas to be more concise, there are effective strategies you can apply. Let’s explore the best simple yet powerful techniques to help you achieve this goal:

  1. Be concise. Use clear and straightforward language to make your essay shorter. Avoid adding unnecessary words or phrases that don’t add to the essay’s content. Instead, focus on straightforwardly delivering your ideas.
  • Original: “In my opinion, I believe that it is essential for us to consider the possibility of implementing changes in our current policies.”
  • Shortened: “We should consider making changes to our policies.”
  1. Eliminate redundancy. Often, we unknowingly repeat the same information or ideas in different parts of the essay. Look through your essay and remove any repeated or unnecessary points.
  • Original: “The main idea of the story is the central theme, which is the most important concept the author wants to convey.”
  • Shortened: “The main idea of the story is the central theme, the concept the author emphasizes.”
  1. Focus on key points. Identify your essay’s essential arguments and critical information. Summarize these points and remove any less important or tangential details.

How to Make Your Paper Short

  1. Avoid long sentences. Long, complex sentences can make your essay appear lengthy. Break them into smaller, more easily digestible sentences. Short sentences are simpler to read and contribute to a more concise writing style.
  2. Use active voice. Active voice sentences are usually more direct and concise than passive voice sentences. This can help you convey your ideas more efficiently and reduce word count.
  • Passive: “The decision was made by the committee.”
  • Active: “The committee made the decision.”
  1. Revise your thesis statement. Your thesis statement is the core of your essay. If your essay is too long, consider revising it and shortening words to ensure it aligns directly with your primary points.
  2. Create a summary. Provide a brief summary of your essay at the beginning or end. This gives your readers a quick overview of your main arguments and findings.
  3. Remove unrelated content. Sometimes, we include information that, while interesting, doesn’t contribute to the main message of the essay. Be thorough in cutting out such irrelevant content.
  4. Seek peer feedback. Having someone else read your essay can offer valuable insights. They may identify areas you can shorten or suggest alternative wording.

Applying these strategies can significantly help you understand how to make essays shorter without losing their essence. By being concise, eliminating redundancy, and using active voice, you can present your ideas clearly and effectively, even within word limits. So, whether you’re facing a strict word count requirement or simply aiming for more concise writing, these tips will empower you to craft informative and brief essays.

Essay Shortener Tool

As you embark on the journey of making your essay shorter, a helpful tool can assist you: the Word Count to Pages Calculator. This tool is especially useful when dealing with lengthy texts and tight deadlines. It lets you concentrate on writing rather than counting words on a page. Here’s how it works:

  1. Instant page count. The converter processes your text and provides an instant page count, even for lengthy texts or comprehensive assignments.
  2. Editing assistance. After you’ve finished writing, the converter can help you edit your paper by providing the exact number of pages your text spans. This helps you allocate the right word count to each section.
  3. Accurate estimation. To use the tool effectively, enter specific details about your paper, including font type, font size, and spacing. This information ensures an accurate assessment of your paper’s size in pages.
  4. Factors considered. The tool takes into account factors such as font type, font size, margin, spacing, and paragraph length to calculate the word count per page accurately.

Pro tip

You can also use this tool for your time management and for visualization. The number of words is not so illustrative for the human brain. However, seeing the number of pages to write will keep you focused on the task at hand and the required time for its completion.

While the converter is highly reliable, it’s important to note that there might be minor differences in word-to-page calculations due to factors like margin space, word length, and paragraph length. Understanding that these calculations are estimates is crucial, and variations may occur based on your paper’s specific requirements (blog post, newspaper article, etc.).

How to write short essays when you don’t have time

Sometimes, you need to write a short essay quickly. Here are some additional tips how to shorten your essay when you’re in a hurry:

  1. Stick to the point. Stay laser-focused on your message in time-sensitive situations. Don’t go off-topic. For example, if your essay is about the benefits of exercise, concentrate on the most critical points like “improved health” and “boosted mood.”
  2. Simplify further. Speedy essays should be even more straightforward. Avoid long, complex sentences, and use short, clear ones. For instance, instead of saying, “The positive impacts of exercise are numerous and varied,” go with, “Exercise has many benefits.”
  3. Use active voice. Stick to active voice as it’s usually quicker to read and write. Active voice sentences get to the point without unnecessary words.
  • Passive: “The marathon was completed by the runner.”
  • Active: “The runner completed the marathon.”

How to shorten an essay to achieve an A

If you’re aiming for an A-grade essay and want to shorten it effectively, follow these “how to shorten an essay strategies”:

  1. Perfect your thesis. Ensure your thesis statement is crystal clear and directly supports your main argument. An A-grade essay should have a precise, concise thesis.
  2. Prioritize impactful content. In high-scoring essays, every word counts. Focus on your most persuasive arguments and examples that strongly support your thesis.

How to write short essays tips

  1. Trim transitions. While transitions are essential for smooth writing, they can sometimes be lengthy. Shorten transition sentences without compromising clarity. For instance, instead of saying “in addition to,” use terms such as “also” to save words.
  2. Efficient quotes. If you have quotes in your essay, make sure they’re relevant and directly support your points. Shorten lengthy quotes and only include what’s necessary.
  • Original: “According to John Smith, an expert on climate change, ‘Global warming has significant consequences for our planet, such as rising sea levels and extreme weather events.'”
  • Shortened: “John Smith, a climate change expert, notes that ‘Global warming leads to rising sea levels and extreme weather events.'”
  1. Concise conclusion. In an A-grade essay, your conclusion should be concise and reiterate your thesis and key points without restating everything in detail.

By following these how to shorten essay advanced tips, you can create high-quality, shorter essays under time constraints and achieve A-level essays that maintain impact and clarity while adhering to word limits. Remember that precision, relevance, and effective editing are essential when you shorten your essay.


So, how can I shorten my essay? In essay writing, dealing with strict word limits can feel overwhelming. Students often struggle with overflowing ideas, resulting in overly long papers. But fear not! There are ways to trim your text without losing quality. The essay shortening techniques discussed, such as paraphrasing, using synonyms, altering sentence structures, and maintaining clarity, provide practical solutions. Also, the importance of proper citations to avoid plagiarism is emphasized.

The article also offers nine simple tips for making essays shorter while maintaining quality, including being concise, eliminating redundancy, and using a verb or verbs in active voice. Essay shortener tools like’s Word Count to Pages Calculator aid in efficient editing.

When facing time constraints, a student needs to stay on point and simplify language, using active voice to craft short essays. And, for those aiming for an A-grade, they should highlight the significance of a clear thesis, impactful content, concise transitions, and efficient use of quotes. Now you know everything about how to make essay shorter!

About authors
James Snyder A Top-10 writer at
James is one of the most prominent authors on our team with more than 7 years of experience. He specializes in writing essays and coursework. James loves to work from home with a cup of hot chocolate and his cat Archibald.
Kate Roth A Top-10 writer at
Kate likes to read long stories and write essays. She’s experienced in both academic writing and marketing activities, so she can tell everything about a writer’s job in a few simple words. You can use our website to request the help of our experts anytime.
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