I like to play search and destroy when editing. I write a list of the not-so-good words dominating my vocabulary, jot down the page number they show up in my manuscript, and reduce them to a reasonable number of appearances. It's sort of a game to me, making the process slightly more fun. But by about the fifteenth round and the thirtieth use of looked, I start to get a bit discouraged.
So, I'm working my way through these subtle demons, turn over the piece of notebook paper I've written my list on and find SOOBEDOO! written across the back in huge letters. I'm sure this is my daughter writing her admiration for Scooby, and how could she resist with a full-sized piece of paper and many colors of ink to choose from?
She does this all the time. I have my million and twelve sticky notes organized neatly in rows of what I need to do and what is coming up in my writing world where she likes to scrawl her name, draw hearts, and scribble right over my neatly categorized agenda.
But how can I get upset when SOOBEDOO! is there to remind me of my sweet darling girl and her uncanny ability to make me smile even though she frustrates me to no end?
She's a precious one!
Out of her reach, I have stuck three sticky notes to the top of my laptop screen. One is from my doodling daughter saying I LoVe You Mommy! written from top to bottom. One is from my son saying I Love my MOM! with eye balls drawn into the o's. And the other from my husband saying h, I love you, HR as if I'd forget who he was. The things we need to stay sane :)
I think I'll have to hang SOOBEDOO! behind my screen to remind myself to smile when I figure out I've used smile 36 times and just 82 times and that 497 times and eyes 111,111 times...
Do you have unnecessary words that repeatedly sneak into your writing?
What tricks do you use to keep you sane through the editing process?