Want to get on your readers’ good side? Then take note of two rules to avoid in your writing. It’s what I like to refer to as the naughty list and if a word appears on it, then it has no place in your quality fiction.
Avoid “ly” words – adverbs
Try to avoid adverbs. Just because they exist doesn’t mean you should use them. These are lazy words that steer you away from more clever descriptions. Think of them like potato chips. Empty calories that aren’t good for you and keep you from quality.
Look at these examples:
“He came to her rescue quickly.”
This sentence does the trick, but there’s nothing special about it. Try this passage instead.
“Every minute was critical. He risked being too late and if that occurred, he could never live with the memory. He ran to her.”
Avoid using “said” as a dialogue descriptor
One sure way to spot an amateur or new writer is to take a look at their dialogue. Does every spoken line end with “said so and so”? It’s the easy way out. Instead, try describing how your character reacted to the scene rather than label the dialogue.
Take a look at these sentences as an example.
“I’m disappointed in you,” said Joe.
It’s boring and amateurish. Try this one:
“Joe rolled his eyes skyward, his arms crossed in front of his chest to show his disappointment. “How could you?”
Do you have a writing pet peeve? Let me know and I’ll highlight in a future blog article.