Old 02-26-2015, 07:40 PM   #1
lovecraft68
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Goddamn you, JBJ!

Have your ears been ringing the last couple of nights? They should be.

A few months back you had mentioned Began/started, beginning etc...as extra and many times weak words.

I realized I did that a lot "I began caressing her leg" so I made an effort to write it as
"I caressed her leg"

Last week I decided I wanted to look at some stuff I wrote a couple of years ago and edit it, tighten it up. An exercise in not just improving an existing work, but seeing how I've evolved in that time.

That's when I "started" cursing you. Goddamn did I rely on those words. So I'm getting rid of them, but every time I erase one I have to change the following words, tedious and annoying and now every time I find another "I began" I am saying "Fucking JBJ, you did this to me!"

See that's the thing with you JBJ, you post your Pavlov's dog junk to rile up the lemmings and you bait people and inflame them with your Archie Bunker persona, but in the middle of all that crap you dole out some good stuff, if people are patient enough to look for it.

Thanks Old Hoss, you've made me better.
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Old 02-26-2015, 08:08 PM   #2
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One of the very first things my editor called me on.

It was worded as, "You're always starting something." but what I heard was Dark Helmet saying, "Why are you preparing? You're always preparing! Just go!"
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Old 02-26-2015, 08:13 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by RejectReality View Post
One of the very first things my editor called me on.

It was worded as, "You're always starting something." but what I heard was Dark Helmet saying, "Why are you preparing? You're always preparing! Just go!"
The first person who helped me out here was Paco Fear who was nice enough to look at my first story before I posted it. The first thing he got me on was "Almost" and "actually" then another editor tore me up for 'literally'

I keep listening to everyone and someday I'll be pretty good!

Ah, Spaceballs.

The one thing that always makes me laugh is when they were combing the desert and the guys with the afro pick "we ain's found shit!"
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Old 02-26-2015, 08:19 PM   #4
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It's amazing what one can learn on these here internets. Can I get it on a disc to go?
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Old 02-26-2015, 11:01 PM   #5
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My favorite ( and my windows critical-fault sound ) is "Out of order? Fuck! Even in the future nothin' works!"

I was in a grocery store one time at around 2 in the morning, and there were some bozos blocking the aisle keeping me from getting to what I was after. I'm standing there fuming, and grumble in exasperation, "How many assholes have we got on this ship anyhow?"

Then from an aisle or two over, I hear a couple of guys yell, "Yo!"

Barely got out "I knew it, I'm surrounded by assholes," through the laughter.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lovecraft68 View Post
The first person who helped me out here was Paco Fear who was nice enough to look at my first story before I posted it. The first thing he got me on was "Almost" and "actually" then another editor tore me up for 'literally'

I keep listening to everyone and someday I'll be pretty good!

Ah, Spaceballs.

The one thing that always makes me laugh is when they were combing the desert and the guys with the afro pick "we ain's found shit!"
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Old 02-26-2015, 11:53 PM   #6
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I realized on my first story when my editor asked why I use the word "that" so much. That this, that that. I realized I didn't need the word in most sentences at all. ( I started the a preceding sentence - I realized that I didn't - how lame, ah? And funny.)

So now I have to really work on not throwing in the odd "that" all the time.
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Old 02-27-2015, 04:35 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by lovecraft68 View Post
Have your ears been ringing the last couple of nights? They should be.

A few months back you had mentioned Began/started, beginning etc...as extra and many times weak words.

I realized I did that a lot "I began caressing her leg" so I made an effort to write it as
"I caressed her leg"

Last week I decided I wanted to look at some stuff I wrote a couple of years ago and edit it, tighten it up. An exercise in not just improving an existing work, but seeing how I've evolved in that time.

That's when I "started" cursing you. Goddamn did I rely on those words. So I'm getting rid of them, but every time I erase one I have to change the following words, tedious and annoying and now every time I find another "I began" I am saying "Fucking JBJ, you did this to me!"

See that's the thing with you JBJ, you post your Pavlov's dog junk to rile up the lemmings and you bait people and inflame them with your Archie Bunker persona, but in the middle of all that crap you dole out some good stuff, if people are patient enough to look for it.

Thanks Old Hoss, you've made me better.
Long live Archie!
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Old 02-27-2015, 04:21 PM   #8
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Long live Archie!
Archie was a text pig.
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Old 03-01-2015, 01:13 AM   #9
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Actually I use almost, always, actually, truly and really, way too much. I know it but i can't seem to help it and pull most of them out during the editing phase lately.

My biggest useless word though is "own". He looks at his own feelings. He packed up his own stuff. She had her own lunch. I must pull out 100 per story and still leave that many in place. urg.
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Old 03-01-2015, 06:16 AM   #10
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If you wanna read some awful compositions take a peek at the TOPS LIST stories.
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Old 03-01-2015, 07:17 AM   #11
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Actually I use almost, always, actually, truly and really, way too much. I know it but i can't seem to help it and pull most of them out during the editing phase lately.

My biggest useless word though is "own". He looks at his own feelings. He packed up his own stuff. She had her own lunch. I must pull out 100 per story and still leave that many in place. urg.
Own is one that I am ditching as well, although I don't use it as frequently as you do. "She felt her own nipples stiffening" that's right folks, "Sarah" has her very own nipples!

Really, very, immediately....in general I am trying to get rid of the extra adverbs-another JBJ rant-

I've discovered that I use the same expressions too much as well "I mean, of course, and starting sentences with "Hell, I..."

Like you, I write on the fly and let the mistakes go to not interrupt flow, but then go back and remove them. The story I just finished editing sat at 27,322 at the start and ended with 26,129 and a lot of it was deleting one word at a time.
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Old 03-01-2015, 10:09 PM   #12
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Master had a delightful rant about "shot him dead" in a few books the last few weeks. We've been tag-team reading the last few "Jack Ryan" novels by Tom Clancy's successor, Mark Greaney.

I know some folks here aren't wild about the Clancy franchise. <shrug> We enjoy them so whatever. I understand what the author is trying to say...it was an instantly fatal wound, not just an injury. But yeah, "shot him dead" sounds like a third grade hillbilly. The funny thing is, it didn't especially bother me until he pointed it out. He has that effect on me.
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Old 03-01-2015, 10:25 PM   #13
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The first person who helped me out here was Paco Fear who was nice enough to look at my first story before I posted it. The first thing he got me on was "Almost" and "actually" then another editor tore me up for 'literally'
When editing, I sometimes do a ctrl+f search for "ly" and excise as many of them as possible. I'm a card-carrying member of the Stephen King school of thought: "ly" adverbs tend to prop up weak writing.
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Old 03-01-2015, 10:58 PM   #14
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I'd really like to see a program where you could submit a body of text, and it would show you which words you're using far more often than average, or, you could select a corpus and it would show you which words you're using significantly more often than in that, if you, for example, consider a specific author the pinnacle of writing. You'd end up with a lot of technical words, and I'm sure all of us would get "cock" and "pussy" flagged, but it'd be useful to see words like "began" or "confess" &c.
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Old 03-02-2015, 02:05 AM   #15
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Own is one that I am ditching as well, although I don't use it as frequently as you do. "She felt her own nipples stiffening" that's right folks, "Sarah" has her very own nipples!

Really, very, immediately....in general I am trying to get rid of the extra adverbs-another JBJ rant-

I've discovered that I use the same expressions too much as well "I mean, of course, and starting sentences with "Hell, I..."

Like you, I write on the fly and let the mistakes go to not interrupt flow, but then go back and remove them. The story I just finished editing sat at 27,322 at the start and ended with 26,129 and a lot of it was deleting one word at a time.
My overused crutch is "then." Dammit, readers will assume sequential chronology without it, so leave it out!
I usually weed most of the adverbs out - that was drilled into my brain years ago - but a recent story I wanted to be more 'romancey' so I decided to go for broke with lots of -ly words. Readers seemed to really like that approach I'm sad to report, because I didn't.
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Old 03-02-2015, 01:16 PM   #16
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My characters are always reaching for things. Just take it already! Stop reaching for it.
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Old 03-02-2015, 07:16 PM   #17
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I'm just going to noy use words when I type a story...
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Old 03-02-2015, 07:18 PM   #18
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My characters are always reaching for things. Just take it already! Stop reaching for it.
Mine are always looking. They're looking at him, at her, looking up, down, around....if they were in a room with your character it would be.

"Sam looked at Gina as she reached over to..."
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Old 03-02-2015, 07:48 PM   #19
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Master had a delightful rant about "shot him dead" in a few books the last few weeks. We've been tag-team reading the last few "Jack Ryan" novels by Tom Clancy's successor, Mark Greaney.

I know some folks here aren't wild about the Clancy franchise. <shrug> We enjoy them so whatever. I understand what the author is trying to say...it was an instantly fatal wound, not just an injury. But yeah, "shot him dead" sounds like a third grade hillbilly. The funny thing is, it didn't especially bother me until he pointed it out. He has that effect on me.
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Old 03-03-2015, 01:12 AM   #20
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This thread is great advice.

I also use the word 'began' too much, and it makes sense to get rid of it.

I'm also trying to reduce the word 'just'.

When describing dialogue, I always use the same actions, 'smiled' 'joked' 'replied' 'raised an eyebrow' ect...

I'm trying to think of more expressions. Some authors are great at that.
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Old 03-12-2015, 02:13 AM   #21
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Hmm. I suppose to me, saying "I caressed her leg" implies I did it once, while "I started caressing her leg" implies it became an ongoing activity. Though I can see that in many cases the distinction would be unimportant.
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