For today’s column, I thought I focus on something that affects quite a lot of writers, both new and experienced. The dreaded filler or filter words. We all use them but knowing what they are can help when it comes to your second and third draft self-edits. My filler word is “just”. It creeps in all the time. Hopefully the links I’ve chosen today will help explain more about filler words and how avoiding them can improve your writing.
https://grammar.yourdictionary.com/grammar/style-and-usage/avoid-these-filler-words-in-your-writing.html – Avoid These Filler Words in Your Writing: This is an excellent resource that not only explains filler words but also provides a list of filler words to filter out as well as providing examples.
https://writeitsideways.com/are-these-filter-words-weakening-your-fiction/ – Are These Filter Words Weakening Your Fiction?: This article explains what filter words are and provides examples that show you how to recognise them in your novel or story.
https://www.grammarcheck.net/filler-words/ – 30 Filler Words You Can Cut Out of Your Writing: This is a great infographic that you can print out and refer to when self-editing your first draft. It also includes examples.
https://annerallen.com/2017/06/filter-words-and-phrases-to-avoid-in-writing/ – Filter Words and Phrases to Avoid in Writing Fiction: Featuring a list of filter words and examples of how to replace them, this article by Kathy Steinemann is a must read. The list of filter words is extensive and the examples are great. Five exercises for writers to try finishes off the article.
https://www.septembercfawkes.com/2018/02/breaking-writing-rules-right-dont-use.html – Breaking Writing Rules Right: Don’t Use Filter Words: Packed with great examples, this article brings home the need to remove filter words and how to make your writing pack a punch.
https://savvyauthors.com/filler-words-to-remove-from-your-novel-by-meg-latorre/ – Filter Words To Remove From Your Novel: This piece contains more filler words that the previous articles and includes examples. It also looks at dialogue tags and passive voice https://thewritepractice.com/better-writer-now/ – Want to Be a Better Writer? Cut These 7 Words: This article looks at 7 words and phrases to cut from your writing. Many of these are expanded upon such as the use of “to be” verbs and adverbs.
https://www.tckpublishing.com/how-to-eliminate-crutch-words/ – How to Eliminate Crutch Words: Beginning with an explanation of crutch words, this article details what common crutch words are before moving on to provide tips on how to avoid them. This includes recognising them in your writing as well as removing them whilst making sure you are still getting your point across.
I hope you enjoyed the links and I look forward to bringing you some more Really Useful Links next week. If there is a topic that you would like to see covered, get in touch and I will see what I can do.
(c) Amanda J Evans