Writing classes often emphasize more about omissions than inclusions. To-be verbs like am, is, are, was, and were top the list followed by –ly adverbs. The same instructors tell wannna-be authors to eliminate indefinite words like some, someone/somebody, somewhere and skip the menu details.
But wait! What about New York Times best-selling author Stuart Woods? Here’s his narration from Collateral Damage after more than fifty books published.
Stone Barrington, the protagonist, is looking for dinner ingredients.
- Stone found some Italian sausages, some mushrooms, some broccoli rabe, and some garlic.
- He ran some water into a pot…
- He found some ziti in a cupboard…
- Then he chopped some onion…
From another paragraph on the same page:
- Stone had bid on some books but didn’t get them.
These writing examples make me hungry. I’m going to search the fridge for some leftovers. After I eat, I’ll edit my crime fiction to mention some angel hair pasta with some sautéed shrimp my protagonist is eating at home after losing someone she was tailing somewhere on her night watch when somebody got in her way and she lost sight of her mark.
Some detective she is. I’ll give her another chance to redeem herself somewhere after my next edits.