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Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Writing Advice #12

Never use "suddenly" or "all hell broke loose".

A short tip today, but nicely tangible. We've got one cliche, and one word that's just overused. You figure out which is which. "All hell broke loose" is not a phrase I ever use, just naturally. It's not descriptive enough.

"Suddenly", I do. My first stories used suddenly so much it became a like a word in a magic spell - meaningless. My problem was, how was I supposed to communicate that something happened unexpectedly and quickly? Writing doesn't give you the luxury of timing. Right now, I just drop the suddenly, whenever I see it, without even looking at it. I'm still looking for the answer of how you make up for the loss, without resorting to cheap tricks.
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