Writing Pet Peeve and How I Resolved It: Write Tight
Early in my writing career, I didn't know all the RULES. I happily wrote for me and made sure I had an interesting character that was in quite a predicament, a swoon-worthy hero who was having all kinds of problems with the heroine, and a villain. And I wanted this bad person to be someone totally unexpected.
Happy, happy, happy writing. I showed my friend, my sister, read bits to girlfriends who laughed. Based on their reactions, I just knew my story was perfect.
I did do one thing right: I joined my local RWA chapter and began to take advantage of their critique group. My seasoned critiquer gave me the best advice ever--Write Tight. She recommended the book, Write Tight: How to Keep Your Prose Sharp, Focused and Concise by William Brobaugh.
Praise the Lord! This book saved me. I learned how to eliminate the pet peeves of thats, justs, etc. How to use adverbs and adjectives properly. How to construct an interesting sentence without over usage of language. I reach each chapter and then raced to my computer to apply what I learned to my
own (there's a tidbit!) manuscript.
The second helpful hint came from a writing friend. She puts her work through Wordcounter.com. After the program counts the words, I print out the report. I go back to my work and search for
over usage (oops!) the repeat offenders. This rewording forces me to write more creatively and fresh. That's what we want to give our readers.
It's hard to turn off my internal editor when reading now. When critiquing a new writer or contest entries, I've cringed when encountering passages that need write tight and repetitive words. Often, I've recommended the book and the website.
With a diet Coke nearby, Vicki Batman is practicing Write Tight as she works on her newest manuscript, a fun and sweet holiday story. Find Vicki at: http://vickibatman.blogspot.com or at: http://plottingprincesses.blogspot.com . Vicki's San Diego or Bust will be available late March thur http://museituppublishing.com .