Edit Overused Words in Your Writing

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When students ask me how to improve their writing the first thing I tell them is to read more and copy the style. After that, I usually tell them to change ‘good’/’better’/’best’ a few times and delete or change ‘very’. Why? They are overused and – most of the time – not precise enough.

Is something simply ‘good’ or is it ‘pleasant’? Is it ‘very good’ or is it ‘excellent’? Is it ‘the best’ or ‘the most appropriate’? Is it ‘better’ or ‘more suitable’?

If you use the words good, bad, very or nice in your writing, read it again to check that your meaning is clear enough. You could even search for alternatives on Word Hippo.