I'm in the middle of revising a 55,000 word teen suspense novel. A writing buddy was reading something else I had written and called me. "Do you know how much you love the word smile?"
"What?" I asked.
"Every character is constantly smiling at another character."
After a lengthy conversation I pulled up the teen novel. In the navigation bar I searched for smile. Yikes! 97 and most of them were used in the exact same phrase. This meant that I needed to search another word in that phrase. Look. OMIGOSH! I must love that word!
218 look ups, looked ats, look over, look ad nauseum, over and over!
The last two days I have spent changing, replacing, or getting rid of the sentences completely. Pleased with myself for my creativity, I called my writer buddy.
"I left about 14 of each of those words."
"Good," she said. Now look up the word only and don't forget to smile."
64 matches including 11 If only sentences...(groaning in frustration)
Do you have any favorite overused words?