While I’m in the editing phase on my journey to publication, I’ve become keenly aware of my writing quirks. When I’m in the throes of writing, revising, and rewriting, I’m not paying attention to minor details like grammar, punctuation, vocabulary, and things like that. But when I entered the editing phase, well, that opened my eyes.
My Writing Quirks:
- Exclamation points––OMG! (see what I just did there?) I use an EXCESSIVE amount of exclamation points. I mean, really, an obnoxious amount. I’m not sure why my characters are always shouting.
- Parenthesis––Let’s be clear. Without being aware of what I was doing, I’ve already exemplified this quirky habit in number one. No need to explain any further.
- Started to––I use this phrase too often, as in, “She started to drive.” How does one start to drive? Or “He started to walk.” How does one start to walk? It should be drove. It should be walked. I started to use this too much.
- Verb tense––This is like number three, but instead of writing, “started to,” I write, “I was talking,” “I was driving,” “He was moving,” when it should be “I spoke,” “I drove,” “He moved.” I was overusing them.
- Filler words––I cut over 1,000 words from one of my manuscripts by removing the words just, so, that, and really. A thousand words. That’s a lot!
- Dialogue filler words––I cut another 500 words removing words/phrases in dialogue. I overuse you know, I mean, right, well, and okay. Yes, that’s how we speak in person, but those words should be used sparingly when writing. Well, I mean, you really know what I’m talking about, right?
I’m sure I’m missing more, but these are the top six that stood out while editing my manuscript, and yes, I purposely used them throughout this post. You’re welcome!
What writing quirks do you have? I bet if you go back and read your writing, you’ll be surprised at how many you have because, let’s be clear, we all have them.