Find cliches and redundancies in text


Our cliche and redundancy finding tool helps you to find cliches and redundancies in your text. Cliches and redundancies make your writing sound amateurish. George Orwell in his rules of writing said: "Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print". Clichés are often the result of lack of imagination or laziness, and, as Orwell says are often "merely used because they save people the trouble of inventing phrases for themselves." Try to come up with a new analogy or metaphor wherever you have used a clichéd one. Examples of clichés: asleep at the wheel, back in the saddle, barge right in, bored to tears.

The Cliches & Redundancies Report shows you the cliches and redundancies that were found in your text so you can eliminate them.

As well as listing the cliches and redundancies in your text, the report shows the text where these phrases occurred. You can use this to quickly decide which phrases you need to change.

For cliches that concern you, try replacing them with something that is unique to your characters, situation, or setting.

For redundancies, deleting the redundant word usually solves the problem.

For example: He reversed the car back.can be simplified to He reversed the car.

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As you review your text, keep in mind that sometimes cliches and redundancies are perfectly legitimate.

For example, consider these two sentences, which both contain the cliche 'side by side'.

1. The pair worked side by side for years.
2. John laid out the bedrolls side by side.

I would count (1) as cliche-like since 'working side by side' is a frequently used phrase that doesn't add any freshness to your writing. Finding another way to say that the two people worked closely together would add more depth/freshness to your story.

E.g. The pair worked the same shift for ten years, clocking in with worried faces on Monday and clocking out with resigned faces on Friday.

This isn't great writing, but choosing a different description has added more depth to the story - why worried on Monday? Why resigned on Friday? It engages the reader a bit more with the story.

I would count (2) as non-cliche since it is a factual description of how John was doing something. Changing the description to 'next to each other' or something similar wouldn't add or detract from the story.

So, to sum up, pretty much any of the phrases listed in our cliche database can be used in a cliche or non-cliche way. The purpose of the Pro Writing Aid report is to alert you to the phrase so that you can make the best decision for your story.

Comments (5) Add Yours

  • Chloe Davis says
    Posted On Mar 09, 2013 | 09:39
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  • seanthiltgen says
    like the redundancy you had in the description of the tool on google drive
    Posted On Aug 27, 2014 | 01:06
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  • praneshmonda says
    Thanks! This helps me with my writing
    Posted On Dec 06, 2014 | 08:04
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  • Thekherham says
    How is 'wings she' a cliche? Some of the phrases you list as cliches aren't cliches at all. They have been taken out of context. I wanted to know what we would do with the dead animal... Where is the cliche here? If you ever come across them you must stay away from them.” Where is the cliche here? This is dialogue, and this is what the character is saying.
    Posted On Jun 06, 2015 | 10:18
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  • j.purvaraj says
    Posted On Feb 04, 2016 | 05:56
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