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Sloppy Writing 101.28

August 31, 2012 by Suzi

Thank you to Chloe at Made by the Potter for her comment in last week’s Sloppy Writing, which mentioned one of her problem phrases. I looked it up in The Proper Way to Say Goodbye, and although it’s not a BIG problem, it’s something I can correct.

that’s all and was all

1. My number one issue was how I use this. A lot of the time it showed up as ‘That’s all right’. This was a good place to vary the voice. Not everybody says all right. Some say fine. Some say okay. So I’ll be choosing one character (the one who seems to use it the most), and will let them use all right. The others can use another variation.

2. My second issue was in the usage. The character was sometimes meaning, there’s nothing more. That was all. But once again, there were several ways to phrase this, and every character wouldn’t use this exact phrase.

3. I also found a few that were just plain unnecessary.
– She was all tense at first. – The all isn’t needed.
– This was all Faye’s fault. – Ditto.

Cleaned up a few more words. So anybody else ever run into over-usage of these phrases?


  1. Janeal says:

    I didn’t really find much of this one in my WIP. Probably because it’s a fantasy and doesn’t have the modern slang in it.

  2. Jenny Morris says:

    All is one I need to go through and take out most of the time. And you make a great point about varying what different characters might say. We don’t all talk the same way.

  3. Dana says:

    It’s/That’s all right is common in my work. I agree with you that variation is needed.

  4. Just stopping by to say as I make my way through the GUTGAA participants’ blogs. Best of luck to you! I remember seeing your title (The Proper Way to Say Goodbye) in the WOC query threads last month and thinking it was a great one.

  5. I’m all for variation and cutting out words. Your posts have been helpful.

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