Clichés are stock phrases that you read so commonly they’re almost meaningless, like “clear as a bell.” These common expressions bore attentive readers and can suggest laziness or even lack of originality in writing.
Why it’s boring: This is the author giving an example about clichés, but nothing interesting has happened since he started talking/writing at this point other than his explanation on how to avoid them which isn’t very engaging for anyone who might be reading or listening – not their fault!
How I would make it more interesting: What makes some people want to write? For me personally its my thoughts going through my head when I’m doing something else entirely (sometimes) … But what do we all
Because clichés are so common, you may not pay much attention to them. Removing clichés from your writing takes time and patience, but we can explain how below!
First, what exactly is a cliché?
Tired clichés are common in language, but they don’t invoke much emotion. They can be lifeless similes like “as clear as a bell” or the similarly bland “clear as day”, which barely conjures sunshine.
Many unnecessary phrases exist in writing, including the one mentioned above. For example, this sentence could be shortened by starting with “the fact is” or simply removing it all together.
One strategy for avoiding trite clichés is to avoid overused and familiar connections between ideas. If the reader can guess what will come next, it’s probably a cliché.
Another example of an unoriginal phrase that should be avoided in writing is “when it rains, it pours.” This type of connection between two events or situations has been used so often by different people throughout history which makes this sentence extremely predictable as well as unimaginative
A third thing you could do would be to remove phrases like “whatever happens” from your work because these types of words are not only uninspired but also boring
Get them out of your system
Don’t let a well-founded aversion to clichés stop you from getting your initial ideas down, however imperfectly. If you find yourself relying on clichés while assembling your first draft, it’s fine—make a note to replace or remove them later. As author Anne Lamott famously put it:
“You get the same effect when phrases are repeated that way as if someone had used alliteration.”
“All good writing starts with terrible first efforts. You need to start somewhere, so just get something down on paper.”
Note that this is precisely what happened when I drafted the words you’re reading now! My early draft was full of clichés like “packed to the gills” – but we mostly made these phrases better using one trusty tool: deleting them from my document. Read on for more!”
You can often just cut them
It’s best to avoid clichés, as they amount to stale filler. They don’t need replacing; only removing because a short draft is better than one that takes twice as long and says the same thing
When you’re looking to simplify your writing, the dictionary is more useful than a thesaurus. Sometimes using clichés can be detrimental because it detracts from what you are trying to say. For example, “I have too much on my plate as it is” means that I can’t take another assignment right now – so instead of saying this with an ambiguous phrase like “as it is”, just state exactly what you mean!
Try replacing them with something fresh
You don’t always have to reinvent the wheel, but it’s fun sometimes. For example, you might congratulate a fellow writer who got two story ideas approved by saying “you’re as lucky as a dog in bin full of beef jerky.”
Not every cliché has to go
If you choose to incorporate clichés into your writing, be careful not to combine them. This warning comes from George Orwell in his essay “Politics and the English Language”.
He warns that this is a sign of uninterest in what one is trying say.