I was just about to say that I just don’t overuse the word “just.” Just STOP using the word “just” Robin!
You guessed it ~ today’s overused word is “just”
When reviewing my manuscript, I thought, “Surely I don’t overuse the word “just,” and don’t call me Shirley. (Bonus point for the first commenter to name the movie this is from.)
I knew about the “just” thing without reading one word from one sage writing advisor. A quick “seek and destroy” uncovered 52 of the bloody things.
I couldn’t bear to part with a handful of “justs.” I imagine Lennon and McCartney felt the same way when they wrote “I’ve Just Seen A Face.”
Here are some poorly written examples to help you spot and nuke the problem in your writing (if you have a problem, that is):
I just stopped by for a spot of tea.
What? Not conversation, not bangers and mash, not a lovely back rub?
I stopped by for a spot of tea but couldn’t be bothered by her writing tip drivel.
I just wanted to leave.
You didn’t put your coat on, grab your purse, or smack her?
She foisted her opinions on me so I smacked her, grabbed my coat and purse, and slammed the door behind me.
I had just one glass of wine when I arrived home.
You are a liar.
I consumed a bottle of wine to erase her annoying tips from my brain.
That is more like it!
Cheers! The next round is on me! Let me know what you find.
For advice on other words that sneak into your writing, clink on the links below:
- I Have a Problem with “That”
- Sneaky Little Words for the word GOT
- Strong vs Weak Words for the word WENT
- Strong vs Weak Words – Part 2 for the word PEOPLE
- Strong vs Weak Words – Part 3 for the words THING and STUFF
- Strong vs Weak Words – Part 4 for the words GO and GOING
- Strong vs Weak Words – Part 5 for the words ALWAYS and NEVER
- Strong vs Weak Words – Part 6 for the words PRETTY, SURE, and CERTAIN
- Strong vs Weak Words – Part 7 for the word HAD and HAVE
- Moldy Verbs, Adverbs, and Intensifiers