If I had to describe myself, it would be in a word that has many meanings with a complexity which falls off the tongue.
A word made up of many elements, is deceptive in appearance, and creates an illusion from the imagination.
My word would be Phantasmagoric. ~Summer Ross

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Word to the writer: "Shine"

Redundant Quotes:

"And there's the Victoria Memorial, built as a memorial to Victoria."
David Dimbleby

"With half the race gone, there is half the race still to go."
Murray Walker

"Trapped, like a trap in a trap."
Dorothy Parker

Whether I help with class papers or fellow writers works, I always look for redundant words as a second step.

 Redundancy- (www.dictionary.com)  - repetition of the same word
 - a repetition of the same, thing, part, amount, or even action, or phrases.

 Writers often talk about the use of the same word over and over again, but a story or essay can also have the same repetitive action or phrase.

 Here are my own rules I follow in every paper or story I write.

 1) How many times have I used the same word in one sentence?

 2) How many times have I used the same word or phrase or action in one paragraph?

 3) How many times have I used the same words, phrases, or actions in the entire piece?


 1) if more than once, take it out or replace with a different word.

2) take it out or replace with a different word.

 3) Just a rough check usually works here, but it depends on the action, word, or phrase. If I have started every paragraph or most of them with the same word- then it needs changed. use your own judgment.

 I do the same with actions and phrases. If I write "She kicked the ball." in one paragraph- then I do not want to reuse that same action unless it means something to the story.

 advice for redundant words, phrases, or actions:

 Use a thesaurus to find different words with close to the same meanings like   www.thesaurus.com

If you would like even further information on this topic look here http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/concise.htm

Ultimately, You are the writer, you are the one who has to choose what to take out, what to repeat, and what should be done about the words you have put on the page.

Next Thursdays word to the writer is "Listen"


B.E.T. said...

oooh, I catch these all the time in my MS's. Thanks for the tips. :D

Angelina Rain said...

Hello Summer,

You won a Stylish Blogger Award. Get your award at my blog.

LTM said...

on occasion I'll repeat a word if it's creating an image of a character... but otherwise, yes! Lose the redundancy. If anything, it's distracting, and you want the reader focused on the story~ :o) <3

gideon 86 said...

Great post, Summer.

I live for my thesaurus. I even have in my bookmarks for easy access and keep it open while I write.


Carolyn V. said...

I have to watch my redundant words. They seem to like my writing (I can tell because they are always in it)!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I try not to repeat a word within a paragraph or a few lines. I usually catch a few during editing though.

The Golden Eagle said...

I repeat myself a lot--in sentences, in paragraphs, especially if I'm adding something in the middle of a page.

Thank you for this post!

Caroline said...

An excellent point. An excellent revision technique. An excellent way to make me do silly things in the comment section. ;)

But, truly, it is good advice. I'm getting better at spotting redundancies in my own work, and AutoCrit catches the rest.

What are your thoughts on intentionally echoing key verbs or sentence structures? Clearly, the device should be used sparingly, but I often receive critiques that point this out as though I hadn't noticed I was doing it. (Perhaps I'm just doing it wrong.)

Old Kitty said...

Thank you so much for the tips on how to stop repitition when writing!! I am so guilty of repitition and need to be on my guard all the time as I write, so these tips are extremely handy to follow!!

Take care

Summer Ross said...

Caroline- Usually there should be a very obvious reason to be redundant with words, phrases, or actions. For example if My character always says the same thing when she finishes a project- like "Viola" then that would be something to keep through out the story because it is one of her quirks.
If I began a story with an important message like the girl kicked the ball, and by the end of the story I want to round it back to that sentence I would repeat the phrase.

N. R. Williams said...

It's so easy to slip up on this. I have made a list of words I tend to use and then use the seek and find function to run through the ms and change the color of the words so they stand out.

Another problem some writers have is to constantly remind the reader of the characters fears, etc. That drives me nuts when I'm reading. I want to yell at the author, "So you couldn't find anything to fill in this part of the page?"
N. R. Williams, fantasy author

I heart comments~~ You all Rock my world!

Make your own