Bad Words – Just, Still and Really

I searched for “just”, “still” and “really” yesterday. Before I started searching for “just”, I thought it would be quick as I thought I hadn’t used “just” much. Boy, was I wrong! I had used “just” four times in the opening of the story:

“C’mere, are you lost?” said a female voice.

I looked up from the travel guide on my tablet to see the speaker. I smiled sheepishly. “No. Just overwhelmed. I’ve been looking forward to vacationing in Europe for months and now that I’m here, I’m trying to decide what to see now.”
:
Really? I’ve just arrived in Cork and a good-looking woman walks up to me and offers to show me around?
:
During World War One, my great-grandfather James Vaupel had served in the First U. S. Division in France. There, he became best friends with Tip O’Sullivan of Boston and started corresponding with Tip’s sister Rosemary. After the war, he went to Boston and married her. Somehow, the Hessian looks have bred true as I had black hair and dark eyes, just like my father.

“What do you want to see in Cork?”

“I don’t know. I’ve always wanted to see Ireland, but there’s never been a list of sights to see. I want to kiss the Blarney Stone at some point. Mostly, I just want to see Ireland.”

I changed it to:

“C’mere, are you lost?” said a female voice.

I looked up from the travel guide on my tablet and smiled sheepishly at a woman about my age. “No. Just overwhelmed. I’ve been looking forward to vacationing in Europe for months and now that I’m here, I’m trying to decide what to see next.”
:
Really? I’ve been in Cork less that an hour and a good-looking woman walks up to me and offers to show me around?
:
During World War One, my great-grandfather James Vaupel had served in the First U. S. Division in France. There, he became best friends with Tip O’Sullivan of Boston and started corresponding with Tip’s sister, Rosemary. After the war, he went to Boston and married her. Somehow, the Hessian looks have bred true as I had black hair and dark eyes, same as my father.

“What do you want to see in Cork?”

“I don’t know. I’ve always wanted to see Ireland, but I don’t have a list of sights to see. I want to kiss the Blarney Stone at some point. Mostly, I just want to see Ireland.”

With “still”, I mainly took it out of sentences. For example:

I knew it was true, but I still didn’t want to believe it.

became

I knew it was true, but I didn’t want to believe it.

I overuse “really”. Sometimes I took it out. For example:

“I don’t really know what happened between Margie and your grandmam after that.

became:

“I don’t know what happened between Margie and your grandmam after that.

Other times, I replaced “really” with “very”:

A few months after graduation, my friend got me an interview at Apple. It went really well and I was very excited.

became:

A few months after graduation, my friend got me an interview at Apple. It went very well and I was very excited.

Working through my bad list – start and there

I have a list of words that I know that I overuse in my writing. At some point in the editing process, I search through my story looking for usages of those words and then rewrite those sentences were I used the word poorly. Yesterday, I searched through “My European Summer Vacation” for “start” and “there”. Some example rewrites below.

I did pretty well on “start” this time. I re-wrote this:

In Sinead’s apartment, the women started discussing what needed to be done and the best way to sell the bigger items.

to:

In Sinead’s apartment, the women discussed what needed to be done and the best way to sell the bigger items.

“There” triggered a lot more rewrites:

“I don’t know. I’ve always wanted to see Ireland, but there’s never been a list of sights to see. I want to kiss the Blarney Stone at some point. Mostly, I just want to see Ireland.”

became

“I don’t know. I’ve always wanted to see Ireland, but I don’t have a list of sights to see. I want to kiss the Blarney Stone at some point. Mostly, I just want to see Ireland.”

Sinead had a definite Cork accent. It was mainly how she pronounced her vowels, particularly before an “r”. I had grown up listening to a Cork accent so I knew that eventually I’d hear a “th” become a “t” as in “think” pronounced “tink” and “three” pronounced “tree”. Mother would be “mam”, pronounced like the American “ma’am”. There’s a sing-song quality to the accent that makes it very pleasant and I enjoyed listening to Sinead talk.

became

Sinead had a definite Cork accent. It was mainly how she pronounced her vowels, particularly before an “r”. I had grown up listening to a Cork accent so I knew that eventually I’d hear a “th” become a “t” as in “think” pronounced “tink” and “three” pronounced “tree”. Mother would be “mam”, pronounced like the American “ma’am”. The Cork accent had a sing-song quality that made it very pleasant and I enjoyed listening to her talk.

I sat my backpack down and went over to her kitchen area. Everything looked old and/or second hand. The area needed a good cleaning. Not up to the standards of what I was used to. There was a box that said, “Bread” that I correctly assumed was a bread box. I got the loaf of bread out.

become

I sat my backpack down and went over to her kitchen area. Everything looked old and/or second hand. The area needed a good cleaning. Not up to the standards of what I was used to. I opened a box that said “Bread” and got out a loaf.

The problems with depending on the kindness of strangers

I sent out my latest story to four people for them to beta-read. One came back with some very helpful comments. Radio silence from the other three. Hopefully I’ll hear from the soon. These aren’t people I know face-to-face and instead I know them only through Literotica.com. Email is my only way of contacting them. I suspect some or all of them are using special email addresses that they only use for porn and they haven’t checked the special email address since I emailed them. Sadly, they may never check their special email address – they’re busy, their set up has changed so they don’t feel comfortable checking their porn email address, they weren’t getting much out of checking their porn email address and have stopped. Life happens.