Why you shouldn’t overuse the word said in your writing. Plus a free printable

When I first started writing I noticed I used the word said a lot. If you are an aspiring writer you may have been told not to overuse the word said. It’s true because it can become redundant and is often times not even necessary. Most times in dialog your reader can tell who is talking. It is always a good idea to put the characters names at the beginning of the dialog because it helps your readers keep track of the conversation. If you choose not to put the names at the beginning of the conversation and just let it flow without any tags even said the read will become confused. 

Many authors will tell you they hate the word said but still use it too much in their first drafts and have to go back to eliminate the word throughout the manuscript. I still find myself doing it more then I care to admit. It took me a while to learn not to just plop the word down for the sake of it. In fact, you may hear that you don’t really need dialog tags at all, a lot of times this may be correct. If however, you want to use them or need them there are many words you can use other then said. I often find and I’m sure you may as well that if I read a conversation like the following that it is boring after a bit.  “Where are we going?” Clarrissa said. “To the castle, we need to get to the king”, Alex said. “Well let’s get moving. If we are too late you know what will happens”, Clarrisa said. “Yes, I do and I don’t want that!” Alex said.

I lost your interest after a minute there didn’t I? Imagine if that were riddle throughout a whole text. The reader would most likely put the book down. You as the author lost the very person you’re trying to draw in. The point of writing (for most writers at least) is to get people to read your work. If they get confused or bored, they won’t read. Using said too much is a huge complaint I see all too often. Today I’m going to share with you a printable of 15 words to use in place of said. You can print it out and have a quick reference to use if you need a word fast. There are of course many other words these are just some of my favorites. You can always add to it so you have an arsenal of words to use. I hope you find this list helps you when you need it! 

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4 Comments on "Why you shouldn’t overuse the word said in your writing. Plus a free printable"

    I agree that “said” is often overused and can slow down your writing. Interestingly, in the first draft of my novel, I left out the “said” in a lot of places because I thought it was unnecessary and my editor actually had me add lots of dialogue tags! In her case, though, she had a good point because my story has lots of characters and she thought it would be confusing if I didn’t attribute the speakers. I definitely found myself using lots of synonyms! Thanks for the download; I will be using it for sure for future reference.

    great blog! love the clean vibe and the great photograph you chose as your header. i think this free download will be helpful for many of your readers. and yay it looks like i was the first to reply to your survey! woot woot 😀

    Joy at The Joyous Living

    Thank you! I found that pic on a royalty-free pictures site and fell in love! I hope my download helps some people along their writing journey! Thank you for answering my poll, it was something to do to learn a bit more about my readers.

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