Reply To: Lesson #6 Peace Out, Filter Words

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#49488
Katie McCoach
Participant

Joanna,

Great work exploring your use of filter words and how to cut down on them! How did it feel doing this exercise?

I unfortunately don’t have the capacity/time in my schedule to create examples for every filter word I mentioned, but I do love this article on the topic (and there are great examples there): https://annerallen.com/2017/06/filter-words-and-phrases-to-avoid-in-writing/

 

Homework 6

I’m the usual (horrible) suspect… My Find/Replace brought scary results. The example with highlighted filter words, you provided, was great. It shows how the experts do it and I hope once I start practicing, my text will be as great to read. Therefore, I’d like to ask you for a favor. Could you share examples for ALL filters words you listed in lesson 6? Or at least those, which make your teeth clenched the most when you see them in a book. I’d appreciate it 🙂

Of 57,000 words:

Continue 5, Notice 7, Think 80, Wonder 12, See 128, Feel 48, Look 164, Remember 29, Consider 25, Know 138, Decide 5, Realize 10, Hear 116, Smell 15, Touch 28, Seem -25

Examples

  1. Before:

He stretched his arms on the back of the seat.

I noticed that if I sat higher, I could rest my head on his biceps. I went lower.

After:

He stretched his arms on the back of the seat.

If I sat higher, I could rest my head on his biceps. And then what? I went lower.

  1. Before:

We walked in that direction, stopped every few steps by men asking Jay about the football and his inability to play. I didn’t think he appreciated their overfamiliarity, their pats on his shoulders and most of all, their advice about plays. Although he kept on a polite smile, his jaw muscles twitched just like Chris’s when he was hiding his irritation.

After:

 We walked in that direction but every few steps, the men stopped us, asking Jay about the football and his inability to play. They patted him on his shoulders and offered profuse advice about plays. Where did their knowledge come from if none of them had the physic of an athlete? Jay kept on a polite smile, only his jaw muscles twitched, just like Chris’s when he was hiding his irritation.

  1. Before:

My roommate walked in, fresh and beautiful as always. Maybe even more beautiful than always. He beamed in greeting and I wondered if it was Antonio, who had put the glow on my best friend’s face.

After:

My roommate walked in, fresh and beautiful as always. Maybe even more beautiful than always. He beamed in greeting. Was it Antonio, who had put the glow on my best friend’s face?

  1. Before:

Although we couldn’t see the cars on the street, we heard a car’s brakes and the door being shut. I went to the front to show Mark the way around the house but found Jay instead, rushing in my direction. I beamed, glad to see him. Good thing, he was wearing his shoulder brace, otherwise I’d run and jump into his arms.

After:

The house obscured the view of the passing cars but not the sound of the traffic. When I heard the brakes and the door being shot, I went to the front to show Mark the way. I found Jay instead, taking the sidewalk in long strides. I beam. Good thing, he was wearing his shoulder brace, otherwise I’d run and jump into his arms.

  1. Before:

I leaned and whispered to Jay’s ear, “Are you with the bride or groom?”

“Bride.” He didn’t offer more information, whether she was family or friend. I didn’t ask for more, feeling him growing more distant with every passing minute. A pity. I thought we’d broken the ice just before the chauffeur let us out.

After:

I whispered to his ear, “Are you with the bride or groom?”

“Bride,” he muttered.

That’s it? How about their relationship? Was she a family or friend? Or maybe his former girlfriend? I didn’t ask and he didn’t volunteer the answers. The minutes passed but he kept looking at the lake in silence. What a pity. And I hoped we already broke the ice just before the chauffeur let us out.

 

 

 

 

Katie McCoach, Instructor
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