Filtering

If you are an author going through the editing process, you’ve probably been cited for filtering. I know I have. So what is filtering? Basically, it’s being an intrusive narrator. For example, instead of writing: He heard a bird chirp overhead. Just write: A blue jay chirped overhead.
The reader does not need to be reminded that someone is telling a story. He or she needs to experience it through the character.
Theses are some filter words to avoid:

to note
to experience
to be able to
to sound
to sound like
to decide
to seem
to look
to see
to watch
to hear
to think
to wonder
to watch
to seem
to feel
to realize

Instead of: I watch the wave crash on the shore.
The wave crashed on the shore.

Filter words or phrases are added at the beginning of a sentence to show the world as filtered through the character’s eyes. Instead, the reader needs to experience the scene without a filter. It is more realistic that way.

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