Posted in Writing Tips

Words and Phrases to Avoid in Your Writing

There are a handful of words that somehow sneak past my radar and into my writing even though I know, I know, they shouldn’t be there. They always end up scattered through the pages, anyway–and it’s usually quite a few of them.

Today I thought I’d share a list of the words I have to keep an eye out for when I’m editing. 99 times out of 100, they can be deleted.

  • slightly
  • had
  • just
  • ‘like’ when it should be ‘as if’ or ‘as though’
  • saw
  • heard
  • felt/feel
  • dialogue tags other than said
  • very
  • really
  • almost
  • nearly
  • suddenly
  • only
  • that
  • merely
  • then
  • a lot
  • as

What words do you give the chopping block when you edit?



Hello! My name is Katie and I like to write. If I'm not writing, I'm probably reading, running, playing with my dogs, or eating peanut butter ;)

4 thoughts on “Words and Phrases to Avoid in Your Writing

  1. why are so many people so aggressively pro-‘said’? I like using other dialogue tags, and it doesn’t bother me when I am reading a book and the word ‘whispered’ or ‘mouthed’ or ‘shouted’ is used. Honestly. Someone needs to prove to me that you can only use the word ‘said.’


    1. I like to use other dialogue tags too, I just tend to use too many in my rough drafts.
      When I have more than two or so other than said in a row, it begins to read a little weird for me. But I definitely use words other than said. 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s