12 Mistakes That Kill Your Writing
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12 Mistakes That Kill Your Writing

These will slay your characters before you have a chance to.

12 Mistakes That Kill Your Writing

Glazed eyes means the death of a writer. From agents to friends who stumble across our writing, certain mistakes will cause readers to yawn, roll their eyes, or continue to scroll for a different article.

1. Being verbs

Are you serious, Hope? Yes . . . yes I am. If you were to pepper action words in your writing, a reader is guaranteed to continue reading. But if I was to thrust in a being verb, our reader will already be on another page.

2. Too much description

The dagger to the heart for several writers I know. Hear me out. Description spruces up paragraphs in incredible ways. However, if you take two pages to describe a hot dog stand, you might want to annihilate a couple of sentences.

3. Split infinitives

This one surprised me a bit. Sometimes split infinitives work like the famous "Star Trek" quotation. But most of the time, the adverb or adjective splits the sentence in an awkward way (like Ross and Rachel on a break).

4. Adverbs

Adverbs tend to litter descriptions. While not inherently bad, use them sparingly, or readers will react to your writing poorly.

5. Hogging one sense

Typically sight or hearing.

6. That, that, that

Most of the time, you can eliminate "that" words, and your sentence will remain unscathed.

7. Long sentences

8. "As monsters"

Coined by Cyle Young, agent of Hartline Literary. Try to reroute sentences using this word.

9. Realistic dialogue

What do you mean, Hope? Do you just want my characters to talk in gibberish? No, no I don't. By realistic, I mean dialogue that doesn't progress the plot. Small talk tends to garner small audiences.

10. It

It is so vague. Try to replace "it" with a better descriptor.

11. Superfluous sentences

I fall guilty under this one. I'll create an epic sentence, but the phrase cannot fit anywhere in the prose. So I will force the thing into the paragraph anyway.

12. Cliches

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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