Avoiding The Use of Clichés

I’ve read a recent series where a character not directly familiar with sayings, idioms and cliches gets them wrong and it’s funny. There are creative ways to approach these things and here’s Joan Hall’s take on Story Empire today.

Story Empire

Hey, SE Readers. Joan here today. In a recent post, I wrote about overusing similes and metaphors. Today I’m going to talk about other overused phrases in writing—clichés. Unlike similes and metaphors, which can be skillfully used, we should avoid clichés like the plague.

So, what is a cliché? They are trite, stereotyped expressions, sentences, or phrases that usually express a popular thought or idea. However, these expressions have been overused to the extent they have lost their original meaning or novelty.

Let’s look at a few examples.

Describing time:

  • At the speed of light
  • Lasted an eternity

Describing people or things:

  • As clever as a fox
  • As old as the hills


  • Frightened to death
  • Scared out of my wits


  • I’m like a kid in a candy store
  • The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree

Why should we avoid them? Using clichés can send the reader a…

View original post 418 more words

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