Tuesday, June 10, 2014

That lightbulb moment; aka the attack of the cliche

Some days I lament that my studies are going in one ear and out the other.

At School I was never taught "how to study" so for the past few years I have been fudging my way through, teaching myself and very sadly to come to the conclusion after nearly 2 years that what I had been doing was all wrong for ME.

Some days I couldn't even begin to tell you what I've read and learnt. Even after hours of laborious writing and note taking. (Luckily I have managed to pull it together)

On other days I have a moment of absolute clarity. Like a lightbulb moment...














(Alright I KNOW that this is a candle, but I didn't have the time to photograph a lightbulb - so lets run with this for the purpose of the post 'kay?) 

Something triggers and I realise I have indeed been taking it in - I just needed to see it to believe. 

Last year I read a book from an author I admired. Her first book was okay, the 2nd and 3rd much improved. So when I saw the release of book one in a trilogy I was excited and eagerly started reading. At about the same time I had been learning about cliches in my writing course & I'm afraid that learning carried through to my reading. I ended up NOT enjoying the book as much as I had previously anticipated.

One thing that stuck in my head learning about Cliches is to use them sparingly as they can be a sign of the lazy writer. I wrote it down on an ever growing list of notes relating to my own draft  -  things to be wary of.

As I read this particular book. Out popped a cliche.

Then another.

And another.

Ordinarily it probably wouldn't have bothered me and in the end it was more that the book stagnated. 

Fast forward to this week and the 2nd book had been in my ereader queue waiting to be read (it was a super duper deal through KOBO and I needed closure of some type.)
Yesterday (holding higher hopes that the writer had stepped up the pace) I started reading. Nope. Nada. Nil. About two chapters in and the pace was the same. The style remained the same. It was frustrating.

And then the cliches.

And more.

And what's this - ONE PAGE. TWO CLICHES.


That line from my study notes kept screeching inside my head as I read yet another cliche - perhaps they could be classed as more colloquial language rather than a cliche - but they stuck out like the proverbial…

I have decided to keep pushing on with the story - I will not count anymore cliches! In the meantime I am off to re-read my OWN novel and ditch every cliche I may stumble across. I'm sure I've used them - a lot! 


* I should add that there was probably only 4 cliches I noticed… but this was four too many for me. Isn't it funny how one small thing like this can become a giant bug-bear?   

No comments: