Welcome to Tuesday Tips - a weekly blog post for busy writers!
Today we are talking about a common mistake often overlooked yet easily corrected. Repetitive words and phrases may flow naturally from a writer's fingertips, yet they can lend a level of monotony for the reader.
How can the author avoid the monotony of repetition?
First - Be aware that you are probably using repetitive phrases. We all do it in our own speech and although it demonstrates our personalities, it doesn't serve us effectively in the written word. For instance, my grandson often says, "Oh, my goodness!" whenever he is excited. I am guilty of beginning elaborative sentences with "Sometimes ..."
Second - Do a quick search of a piece of writing to identify 3-4 words or phrases that might be overused. Keep a mental or written list handy to remind you to watch for those terms when you are working on a new project.
Third - Use your thesaurus! It's a tool. It's free. It can help.
Fourth - Reread, rewrite, and search your finished product for those all too familiar expressions.
Lastly - Don't lose your voice. You are the expert of your own expression. Don't get so caught up in the advice of other writers that your work loses its individuality. Sometimes (see what I did there?) those repetitions drive home a point or set your writing apart from others. Just choose the opportunities wisely!
What do you think about this #tuesdaytip? Was it helpful? Feel free to leave a comment, and as always ...