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“I’ve HAD it up to here with the word HAD,” she said while drawing an imaginary knife across her throat.

Today’s words of the day are, you guessed it, “had” and her kissing-cousin “have.” My novel was littered with them.

Many (too many to count) of my “had’s” and “haves” were tossed out with the bathwater. I give you the following examples:

I had breakfast. 

Big deal. Me too.

I threw up my breakfast.

I ate breakfast with Superman.

I inhaled my breakfast. 


She had questions for me. 


She pommeled me with questions. 


She had red hair.

What? Is she now bald?

Her red hair glowed like a match-tip.


I have a bossy dachshund.

Really? He should meet William.

 My bossy dachshund thinks he owns me.


The problem I have is ______________.

 You fill in the blank, but please be nice.

My problem is abuse of the words “had” and “have.”

If you will excuse me, I’m off to do hours of editing.

For advice on other words that sneak into your writing, clink on the links below: