About Me

My photo
Clare writes inspirational romance, usually of a suspenseful nature. Her books are available through her publisher Pelican Book Group and Amazon. She is married with three kids and lives in the UK. She loves watching sci-fi, crime drama, cross stitching, reading and baking.

Monday, 10 August 2009

Bad Words

No, not the ones the kids say to annoy you or the ones that slip out when you're angry or you drop the dining table on your foot. The kind that we use every day but editors don't like. I asked my editor for a list of ones to edit out of Sky and she very kindly sent me the following. Oops - an ly word slipped in there. See - its so easy to do and so hard to avoid.

Look - not evey other line - my 70 page short story had 500 of these
Nod - see above!
a bit
a little
a lot
actually
almost
although
could
feel/feeling/felt
going to
had
have
hear/heard
in order to
it
just
knew
know
look
ly adverbs
maybe
notice
observe
often
really
see/saw - no no, playing on the see saw in the park is still fine ;-)
smell/taste
some
still
that
then
there
though
usually
very
was/were
watch

Oh so many and so hard to avoid. My hero can no longer run quickly to his car, he has to speed or bolt or zoom. And as for hugging Miss Heroine tightly... ummm he hugs her until she can no longer breathe, faints and has to be revived with some mouth to mouth :D

5 comments:

Delia Latham said...

Clare, that last little example you used tells me WHY editors don't want the "ly" words. Wow - what a picture your last sentence brought to mind! lol FAR better than "he held her tightly."

Grace Brooks said...

Looks like your editor is asking for show don't tell which translate to more action.

Kaye Manro said...

Great list! And it's so good your editor pointed it out to you. I've been hit too. My editor counted every was and had in my story! And I thought I was doing so well as I don't usually use was and had often. Seems like even a few is too much for some editors!

Donna B said...

Seemed, or seems is another one that can usually be replaced to make things more active. But don't think every -ing or -ly word has to be eradicated, just use them wisely.

Great list though!

May your writing be as lively and cunning as you can make it.

Catherine Bybee said...

Awesome list. There are a few in there I never considered 'Bad Words'. lol