Sloppy Writing 101.55

I haven’t done any sloppy writing posts for a while, but trust me, I still have lots of issues to fix. The point of doing these posts is to point out ways I’m trying to clean up my writing. There are so many unnecessary words out there that plague my stories, I end up spending more time editing than writing. Way more.
As writers, we are supposed to tighten our prose, but we also need to develop that elusive voice. We want to get rid of all those unnecessary words, but we don’t want our voice to be blah/boring.
Finding that balance is tough, but I’ll keep working on it, keep learning, and hopefully you’ll learn something new too.
Two (often) unnecessary words I use are outside and inside. They can easily be cut without changing the meaning. And really, most of those times, it’s just redundant saying outside/inside. You’ll see what I mean in my examples below, all from The Proper Way to Say Goodbye.
-Her empty voice matched the way I often felt inside.
-I clenched my fists trying to control the anger inside.
-Nervous couldn’t begin to describe my feelings inside.
Apparently I mostly overuse inside when it comes to feelings. And really, does anyone have feelings outside their body? No.
-The cool air outside was a welcome relief.
I didn’t have as big a problem with outside, but this is one I could cut. You know from the prior sentences that she is outside, so I just don’t need it here.
Do you have an outside/inside problem?

3 Responses

  1. It always amazes me how much I can cut when i go back and revise (and revise and revise and….) I tend to do a lot of “he thought to himself” type of things – duh, who else is he going to think it to?! 🙂

  2. enjoyed the responses from thebig reveal and have a couple new books to look into, esp the iron fey series! as for me, i’m all about creating fictional worlds. some reality based, some completely fantasy… and i love to read any setting, the characters and story determine the worth! if an author has those elements they usually envelope them in a great setting too!

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