Monday, November 19, 2018

Eliminating Filler Words

Every time I'm editing one of my novels, I'm always on the lookout for 'filler words'. These are words that are really unnecessary and just cloud my writing. Truth be told, I'm not as good as catching as many of them as I would like, despite how many times I read and reread each novel.

But I've finally stumbled on something that makes it SO much easier to tighten up my writing {hi, welcome to four years later}. Never too late though, right. So if you need a little help like me, just click on the 'find' icon on your microsoft word home tool bar. A search bar will come up, and you can type in any word you want. Then, a list will come up with every time you include that word, or group of letters in your document. Let's just say I was completely surprised at just how many times I used the word 'absolutely' in this current WIP.  Life changing!

Below is a list of the words I either tried to eliminate completely or change to a stronger word, or use as sparingly as possible.  Let me know in the comments if you need clarification or have any questions!

Filler Words
really/very
that
down/up
start/begin
sudden
just {apparently this is my favorite word in the English language}
almost
rather
-ly words
actually
finally
though
said
so
felt
always
still
then
be able to
seem
sense words {felt, touch, taste, look, hear, smell....use a stronger word or description. Instead of "She felt dizzy" say "The floor rose up to meet her"

What are the filler words you use most in your writing?