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To follow up on our previous posts of most overused/abused phrases....

Most of us, I suspect (I hope!) are writing seminar papers right about now. What word or phrase do you find yourself using far too frequently?

For me, it's "thus." It showed up 27 times in a 15-page paper. That's....wrong. Simply wrong.

"Explore" also shows up....3 times in one paragraph. *headdesk* Maybe this is a sign that I need to stop repeating myself...


( 27 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 4th, 2008 10:46 am (UTC)
i have a series of verbs that i like quite a bit: evoke, emerge, subvert, engender, link, highlight, resonate.
i'm also a fan of the following adverbs: ably, seemingly.

in good news, i may be able to finish this one seminar by friday and start on the next one; in bad news, all my friends now hate me due to this fact (:D).
Dec. 4th, 2008 12:25 pm (UTC)
Not us! We just sympathize! :)
Dec. 5th, 2008 05:17 pm (UTC)
and add to the litany of complaints :P
Dec. 5th, 2008 05:17 pm (UTC)
ooooh....I haven't used emerge and resonate in a while. Thanks for the ideas!
Dec. 4th, 2008 11:39 am (UTC)
I am far too attached to 'suggest' and 'however' for my own good.
Dec. 4th, 2008 02:10 pm (UTC)
That's me too. Also "seems" pops up with distressing frequency.
Dec. 5th, 2008 07:47 am (UTC)
oh yes...I'm addicted to "suggest."

I'm glad that no one said "obviously."
Dec. 5th, 2008 09:52 am (UTC)
Heh, I think it's pretty telling that we all over-use words of apparent connection and uncertainty.
Dec. 5th, 2008 05:15 pm (UTC)
and conclusions :)
Dec. 4th, 2008 02:56 pm (UTC)
"Effectively", "such" (as in "It is such a viewpoint that..."), and "thus."

Actually, I've noticed that I used a lot of the same sentence structures repeatedly. Like, sentences that end with an additional clause started by a gerund, making many of them seem similar. <-- Like this.
Dec. 5th, 2008 08:22 am (UTC)
*nods* In my later drafts, I try to re-work the writing to introduce variety into the grammar. I've had plenty of profs call me on it in the past...
(Deleted comment)
Dec. 5th, 2008 07:47 am (UTC)
exactly! I'm hoping that the "clue conclusion" keyword will be sufficient hand-waving that they won't notice that the actual argument is a bit weak.

Dec. 4th, 2008 05:30 pm (UTC)
I also love 'thus' and 'hence'. "However" is my favourite contradictory conjunction, it seems.

My favourite verb, it seems, is "illustrate".
Dec. 5th, 2008 07:48 am (UTC)
I use "suggest" instead of illustrate, but I suspect we're overusing it for the same rhetorical move.
Dec. 4th, 2008 05:33 pm (UTC)
I must scrub "in order to" from writing, but I can't seem to do it. I'm also a big fan of unnecessary commas, as my husband pointed out when proofreading my last paper.

"What's the matter with you?"

"What? What do you mean?"

"This sentence here has five commas. I think it might be the sign of a strange and very fun brain disorder."
Dec. 5th, 2008 07:49 am (UTC)
I *hate* seeing "in order to"...but it's really difficult to rework some of those sentences. I usually find that I have to re-write the sentence, often splitting it.

*grins* Coetzee has been good for me on the comma front. I used to put commas everywhere...but after reading his terse style, I'm slowly starting to wean myself from it.
(Deleted comment)
Dec. 5th, 2008 07:50 am (UTC)
inherently--that's another one.

Someone needs to take away the semi-colon key. Half the time, I could and really should just break it into two sentences.
Dec. 6th, 2008 02:44 am (UTC)
I go back after my first draft and take out the majority of my semi-colons by breaking them into separate sentences; it's a painful process, but a necessary one! (And I got to use a semi-colon. So all is right with the world!)
Dec. 6th, 2008 04:58 am (UTC)
I go back after my first draft and take out the majority of my semi-colons by breaking them into separate sentences. It's a painful process, but a necessary one!

*grins* not any more!
Dec. 4th, 2008 06:33 pm (UTC)
I use "therefore" a lot, and "suggests" and "however" too.

This thread is giving me ideas for new words! :)
Dec. 5th, 2008 08:21 am (UTC)
*grins* verbal recycling :)
Dec. 5th, 2008 02:03 am (UTC)
I am too big a fan of the "thus." I also tend to write "thereby" + present participle WAY too often, thereby making my papers nigh unreadable.
Dec. 5th, 2008 08:20 am (UTC)
*grins* I found quite a few "therefore suggesting" and "therefore implying" in mine. Conclusions and intros seem to be the worst place for these things.

Dec. 5th, 2008 05:04 am (UTC)
I use "In this way,..." a lot to transition from quotes to analysis. It's very addictive and I need to figure out better ways of doing this effectively!!
Dec. 5th, 2008 08:21 am (UTC)
I overuse similarly for a similar purpose. (did that even make sense?)
Dec. 6th, 2008 10:50 pm (UTC)
I came up with a word I don't use, but it should be banned entirely.
I hate whenever someone wants to say something about bureaucracy, and they use the term "Kafkaesque."
( 27 comments — Leave a comment )