Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Writer Wednesday: Echoes

I'm finishing up a revision. *sigh*

And I know you all know what I'm talking about.  But strangely, the last thing I fixed was the most difficult.

I have an echo problem. (Echo problem. Echo problem.) LOL.

Really, I'm sure almost all writers have them.  Anyway, I have a couple I'm working on, but one in particular that was troublesome was STOMACH.

Yes. Stomach.

I know, right?  WHY?  Well, I think it's mostly because that's where I feel many emotions the strongest.  And I do use a lot of other things, but apparently STOMACH stands out the most. *sigh*

So, to fix it, I did a search for the word stomach in my manuscript, and changed a lot of them.  And to come up with a different way to get the same effect, I went to The Bookshelf Muse's Emotion Thesaurus.

If you weren't aware of it, you need to check it out.  Angela Ackerman has amassed a treasure trove of different ways to show numerous emotions (and settings and personality traits, too!). 

The nice thing is, now that my STOMACH issue has made itself so annoying, I will probably be more aware of it and it won't be such a big issue in my next manuscript.  Of course, something else will just take its place.

Like the word just.  *sigh*

And sighing. o.O

What are your echoes?  And how do you go about fixing them?


  1. Ooh, thanks for the resource! I try to give my character's a nervous habit - my MC twists her watch in my current manuscript. That way it doesn't always have to be her stomach, or her chest pounding, or blushing! But I do resort to those too...

  2. "Just" was one of my big echos in Destined. I found that if I only let one character say that word, at least it was a particular feature of her speech and didn't litter the mss as much (I hope!)

  3. I wrote my novel in first person, and I overused "I" sentences. I though this was the norm, but then I realized from my editor that there are several creative ways to get the same message across while eliminating "I."

    And the Emotion Thesaurus is excellent. Thank you!

    Write well,

  4. I love that idea, Nikki!

    Jessie, that's a creative way to solve the problem, too. :)

    I hope you find the Emotion Thesaurus helpful, Jennifer. I love it!

  5. GREATEST resource ever. Thank you so much!!! I overuse eyes - anything having to do with them far too much.

  6. Oh I am soo behind on revisions. I'll be cheering you on

  7. I tend to have similar echoes as those stated above, but I also have my character's start their sentences with WELL too often.

    So annoying, so I go at them with super sharp and shiny scissors. HA!

    Nice post!

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  9. Echoes are the bane of my final draft, I swear. My particular problem is head shaking and shrugging. And the word 'Just'.

    In my final pass, I read with an eye only on words and actions I overuse. Once I have my list, I use MS Find and Replace to see just how bad the problem is with each. (70 listing for the word 'just'? Um yeah, that happened once. It was so embarrassing, but better I catch it than an editor reads it, right?)

    Thanks for the Emotion Thesaurus mention--this is exactly why we created many of us needed something like it. :) I hope the book Becca and I have in the works will be just as well received!

    Have a great, echo-free week!

    Angela @ the Bookshelf Muse


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