Monday, October 03, 2011

The fallback plan

Every writer has those words or phrases that he or she tends to use a lot.

Obviously, this is a weak point in writing and easily fixed. 

It's catching it that can be a problem, that goes without saying.

So here's my crutch list broken down by book and why I picked those words

No System At All:
every minor male character was named Mike.
Why?
Because my best friend in middle school was named Mike.  I had a crush on him, there were times he had a crush on me. But it never worked out... at the end of high school he came out of the closet I figured out why we were never meant to be. And Mike is an easy name to spell.

New York Karma:
The f bomb was dropped over 500 times in a 236 page book... (during the first draft-- it was cut down considerably.)
Why?
NYK was an adult book and it was set in New York and New Jersey.  These are my people and we curse a lot.  The f word is a noun, verb, adverb, adjective and just a filler in conversation.  It's a pretty f*cking important word. 
Sensiblity won and I cut it back down to 50 words I think, maybe less.

Penny and Hank.
They get pancakes, CONSTANTLY.  Seriously every time these characters need to sit down and eat, it's pancakes. 
Why?
I love pancakes and never get to eat them.  They take too much time to make and eat.  For me pancakes are a special occasion.  Penny and Hank have a lot of time to kill, so why not sit around and eat pancakes...

So obviously we all have fall back words, that goes without saying.  Find them and fix them.  Your writing will be stronger for it.

Can you tell which words are my fall back words for my blog?   What's your crutch words or phrases?  Leave them in the comments.


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3 comments:

  1. Interesting post. I'm not sure I have fallback words. I take a thesaurus everywhere. That's one of my fall backs. Lol

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  2. Ahh, pancakes with minor f***ing character Mike. Good times.
    I have lists of words I search and delete with my WIPs. "Just" is a big one, as are the adverbs. A reader noted that in my last WIP I used "processed" a lot in lieu of saying "thought about". Very cool that she caught it, because I hadn't noticed. :0)

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