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Writer’s Tip #11: Keep Your Story Strong

writers resourcesWhen you read your story, does it sound off, maybe you can’t quite put your finger on it, but you know you’ve done something wrong? Sometimes–maybe even lots of times–there are simple fixes. I’ll point them out. They’ll come at you once a week, giving you plenty of time to go through your story and make the adjustments.  Please add comments with your favorite editing fixes.

Don’t mitigate action with weakeners. These include:

  • almost
  • appeared to
  • seemed to
  • mostly
  • nearly

These words give wiggle room to your writing and readers want to know you’re sure of your plot, characters, settings. For example:

  • She became almost comfortable around him
  • The truth almost overwhelmed her
  • The changes were nearly immediate

I know–you really mean not quite. You’re uncomfortable being so absolute. Get over it. Readers want clarity and precision. They want you sure of yourself.  Trust me–your novel will read be stronger with the changes.

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3 thoughts on “Writer’s Tip #11: Keep Your Story Strong

  1. Interesting point, which I have heard elsewhere, but I still find that a real “not quite” is sometimes part of a style. Of course, you can’t use this all the time, but I don’t think you should never use it. Depends on the kind of stuff you’re writing.

    Uh, note that I’m not a specialist at all, just a thought 🙂


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