Wednesday, March 5, 2014


Using clichés can pull the reader right out of the story. Maybe it’s a saying so old they remember their grandpa saying it and can’t adjust to the fact that the character who used it is supposed to be their own age. Maybe it’s something the boss says ten times a day and it makes them grit their teeth with annoyance. Or maybe it’s just inappropriate. A word or phrase pulled out its true context and used far too often by modern society.

But for whatever reason, avoid clichés like the plague.

Also watch out for nouns being used as verbs, verbs as nouns, and adjectives as adverbs. The only true way to “brand” yourself is with a red-hot poker, and the only place it’s acceptable to call an invitation an “invite” is on Facebook.

Helen Woodall

Helen is available to line edit and/ or content edit fiction and non-fiction. Rates on application.

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