…and it’s writing.

A tipsy discussion of writing craft. Writers D.C. McNaughton and Avery Ames imbibe a few drinks while they review and revise their old (and often cringey) writing. Each episode focuses on a particular aspect of craft and features a themed cocktail pairing.

Ep 021: Filler Words

January 10th, 2022

What do words like "just", "really", and "all" have in common? They can act as excess fluff and filler, which clutter up your writing and make it less readable.

In this episode, a slightly rusty D.C. and Avery will show how to clean up these words by revising an old piece of our writing.

Books and resources mentioned in this episode:

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Drink: Lemon Fluff

A basic citrus sour with marshmallow fluff added, to represent the “extra fluff” of filler words.

  • 2oz Vodka
  • ¾ oz curacao
  • 1 oz Lemon juice
  • ¾ oz Simple syrup
  • Dollop of marshmallow fluff (~1-2 tbsp)
  • Granulated sugar (for glass rim)
    (for extra fun, you can use colorful sanding sugar in gold or yellow)
  1. Shake vodka, curacao, lemon juice, and simple syrup in a cocktail shaker with ice.
  2. Rim a coupe, martini, or sour glass with sugar.
  3. Pour cocktail into coupe and top with a dollop of marshmallow fluff.

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Excerpts:

BEFORE:

Mother gave me that look. The one that said she knew I was really hiding something, and also knew that I was just not going to tell her. But she was no fool. She’d seen my eyes flicker over to the flower and back. My heart began to race as I remembered Leon’s soft smile. Something about the incident just stuck in my head, replaying that meeting in an endless cycle.

Being friends with a Prince could be somewhat fun, though. It would make all those girls who had laughed at me at that tea party really think twice.

My mother seemed to sense my change of heart, with that maternal intuition. “We are actually invited to the royal table for breakfast,” she told me excitedly.  “That is a rare privilege, so please do your best to look grateful.”  She looked at me with a gaze that was both motherly command and plea.

 

AFTER:

Mother gave me the look. She knew I was hiding something, but she was no fool. She’d seen my eyes flicker to the flower and back. My heart raced as I remembered Leon’s soft smile. The incident stuck in my head, replaying that meeting in an endless cycle.

Being friends with a Prince could be exciting. It would make those girls who laughed at me think twice.

My mother seemed to sense my change of heart. “We’re invited to the royal table for breakfast,” she said.  “This is a rare privilege, so please do your best to look grateful.” 

 

Initial Word Count: 155

After Editing Wordcount: 99

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