Ron’s Tip of the Day is now Ron’s Lit Tip. Every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday I will share a tip with you. Today I am looking at Word Overuse.
Take a look at these words ‘then’, ‘beautiful’, ‘sunny’, ‘happy’, and any other word you can think of. They all have the potential to be overused.
What do you mean?
I am talking about repeatably using the same word over and over. When you find yourself doing that it might be a good idea to find a synonym. It means the same but is not the same word. Repetition is not always complimentary. Sometimes it becomes a drag on the story and may attract undo attention from the reader.
Using synonyms can also freshen your story and make everything more enjoyable to read. It good to look for other ways of describing the same action, reaction, or whatever else you are writing about.
This is also true of antonyms, which are words with opposite meanings. But it is synonyms you will use more often. They broaden your word usage and make your book that much more effective.
What’s the danger of overusing words?
I’ve already referred to it. It becomes a drag. It loses its freshness and makes the story stale and boring. So, it is a good thing to keep an eye out for repetition and changeup if possible. Perhaps get yourself a thesaurus for a resource.
But be careful. Some words might be synonyms but have slightly different applications. So, when replacing one word with another make sure to reword the sentence or paragraph. You don’t want to lose the meaning. You’ll also want to be aware of the tense. It could be finite, past, present, or future.
Lit Tip: Learn to use synonyms properly.
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R Frederick Riddle is the Editor of TR Writing Services providing help to struggling and/or new authors to write and publish their books. He is also an author of Historical, Speculative, and Mystery fiction, plus co-founder and Vice President of T&R Independent Books. To reply to any blog you can comment on a blog and/or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. His Facebook page is at RFrederickRiddlesWorld.