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Tuesday Tip #33: Avoiding Filler Phrases

September 18, 2018

 

We've talked about what is filler and why it should be cut from your content, but we haven't talked about why filler phrases like a bita lotmore often, and in order to show up in our writing. Next time you stumble across one of these phrases in your text, consider these 3 things: 

 

1. SPECIFICITY 

 

Rather than using these generic phrases, consider whether your content would be better served by specificity of language. Is there data you could use to strengthen your statements? Is there a word you could use to better capture your meaning? 

 

Ask yourself what relevant details are missing. 

 

2. FORMAL LANGUAGE

 

When writing a formal address or document, we tend to unconsciously add filler to sound smarter. However, these words and phrases clog your writing. Next time you're drafting formal content remember direct language is best! 

 

3. WRITER TICS

 

Filler phrases are writerly habits. If you aren't sure what you repeat, consider using Advanced Find in Word to highlight duplicated words and phrases. Or consider comparing old rough drafts to see what shows up in both. These are likely phrases you unknowingly fall back on while writing. 

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