“Write freely and as rapidly as possible and throw the whole thing on paper. John Steinbeck
You all must have seen the Discovery Channel and the National Geographic Channel and in it the Lions & the other Big Cats, the African Elephants, the Wild Beast and the various flora and fauna of the forest with many different species of animals. Well! They are mostly from Africa and most importantly from the Maasai Mara, in Kenya. Maasai Mara is situated in Kenya and is one of Africa’s greatest Wildlife Reserves. It is considered as the world’s top and most favorite Safari Destination and this is due to its spectacular Eco-System…..Read More.
We all use crutch words. They help us fill the gap in a conversation or speech when we’re unsure of how to proceed, or haven’t quite thought out the best way to position something. Niti Shah
(←that's the most common, overused crutch word in the English language)
We slip our crutch words into our writing to give us time to think what we want to say. English boasts a preponderance of crutch words. But I’ll give you my two cents on the most egregious ones. All websites I researched listed “actually” as the single most egregious, overused crutch word.
Other killer crutch words include: literally, basically, really, very, totally and just.
Crutch words are meaningless, wasted words that slip into our writing. Crutch words don’t add value, clarification or meaning to our sentences. Adverbs are the worst crutch words. If we can use a robust action verb we don’t need crutch words..
For example: Sam was literally exhausted after running the 5K race. In this sentence we don’t need to say he was “literally” exhausted. Who out there doesn’t know what exhausted means? Exhausted means exhausted. “Literally” does nothing but take up space. It’s a crutch word.
My most often used crutch word is “really“. I have others as well. But “literally” takes up lots of space in my writing. I’m working on using more robust, action-packed verbs. Fighting crutch words is a constant battle for me.
My writing teacher in college told me an easy way to clean up my writing during an editing pass is to delete all the words that end in “ly”. Seriously? Most words ending in “ly” are adverbs anyway. If we write a robust, dynamic verb in our sentence we don’t have to add anything to it.
For more discussion and a list of crutch words you might be using click here.
That’s an important question we need to answer at some point in our blogging career. My guest blogger, Val Boyko wrote some interesting observations of bloggers on her site, Find Your Middle Ground.
What are some of your ideas about your likes and followers? I’d love to get your feedback. Please check out Val’s guest post on For His Glory today, and let me know what you think.
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