Do you abuse the phrase “then suddenly” in your writing? You should check and clean up your manuscript.

Earlier this week, reddit reader Ryan DeJonghe got fed up with overuse of the word “suddenly” in a book. He used Kindle searches to do a brief survey of how writers use the word. Check it out:

Thanks to the Kindle’s search feature, I conducted a little experiment. This 2-D book has 55 uses of suddenly, including three uses of all of a sudden. This averages out to one suddenly for every ten pages. I went on to test some other authors. Stephen King in his early works had about the same average; his newer works about one in twenty pages. Neil Gaiman about the same–one in twenty pages. Then I tried Chuck Palahniuk‘s Fight Club. In 224 pages, there was not a single use of suddenly.

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