Writers’ tics—those sneaky, dastardly things that slip into our writing when we’re not looking and make it go CLANK! They’re insidious and terribly hard to recognize: our eyes glide right over them when we’re editing.
And it doesn’t matter how experienced we are, we’re still vulnerable to them.
What are they? Here’s a nowhere-near-complete list:
- Incessantly using unnecessarily intrusive adverbs excessively.
- Clichés we’ve read a million times before.
- The words or phrases we really like to use over and over because they really do a really great job of really capturing what we’re really trying to say.
- Those, like, popular, y’know, empty words or phrases that are nothing but noise. I know: seriously?