1. Maxitoutwriter
    Offline

    Maxitoutwriter Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2012
    Messages:
    86
    Likes Received:
    9

    What is another word for thing?

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Maxitoutwriter, Sep 9, 2012.

    I find it so irritating when I run into the word thing, and I cannot think of a better word to use. Any ideas?

    I'm fine if I run into a sentence where I can use object instead. However, in this context I am always baffled about a better word to use. I can't think of any. :confused:

    Example of what I'm talking about:

    "Another thing that I have noticed is that..."
     
  2. Pheonix
    Offline

    Pheonix A Singer of Space Operas and The Fourth Mod of RP Staff Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2012
    Messages:
    5,716
    Likes Received:
    401
    Location:
    The Windy City
    Hmmm, I'm run into that problem too.

    What about, "Something else i've noticed is that..." or "I've also noticed...", "I've been noticing..."

    Sometimes, you can't just find a better word, but you can change the structure up to eliminate the need for the word thing.
     
  3. Warp Zone
    Offline

    Warp Zone Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2012
    Messages:
    709
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    World 1-2
    I can't think of a better word either. Try rephrasing the sentence instead. Like:

    "Another thing I have noticed" becomes "I have also noticed"
     
  4. lixAxil
    Offline

    lixAxil Self-Proclaimed Senator of the RPG subforum. Contributor

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2012
    Messages:
    5,504
    Likes Received:
    373
    Location:
    The sea of fragments
    Well no proper words, but according to context...

    Stuff
    Matter
    Subject
     
  5. ChickenFreak
    Offline

    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2010
    Messages:
    8,936
    Likes Received:
    5,473
    I think that you should be able to eliminate most or all of that phrase. For example:

    "Another thing that I have noticed is that the back steps are dirty and poorly maintained."

    could, as suggested above, become:

    "Also, I've noticed that the back steps are dirty and poorly maintained."

    Or

    "Also, the back steps are dirty and poorly maintained."

    Or just

    "The back steps are dirty and poorly maintained."

    I realize that this is a very specific example for a more general question, but a nonspecific word like "thing" is often used in phrases that shoud be cut out. (As an example of cutting unneeded words, the above sentence started out as something like, "...but in my experience, it's often true that a nonspecific word like 'thing' is used in phrases that, on reflection, can simply be cut away..." Most of those words were cut as useless fat.)
     
  6. Maxitoutwriter
    Offline

    Maxitoutwriter Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2012
    Messages:
    86
    Likes Received:
    9
    Thanks guys. Good advice. :)
     
  7. eclipsenow
    Offline

    eclipsenow Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2012
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    0
    I like the word thing. It first really came to my attention in West Wing when Joshua had post-traumatic stress disorder and had cut his hand. The Chief of Staff said to Joshua, "You could have an infection, you could have a thing..." It represents the way people talk. If the character you are visualising actually talks like this, it's fine. If not, then they should speak more specifically.
     
  8. B93
    Offline

    B93 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2012
    Messages:
    297
    Likes Received:
    32
    I'm with eclipse on this. One character may talk that way as part of what makes their dialog recognizable. The narrator or multiple characters should find more direct ways to make their statements.
     
  9. digitig
    Offline

    digitig Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2010
    Messages:
    2,502
    Likes Received:
    79
    Location:
    Orpington, Bromley, United Kingdom, United Kingdom
    Just use "thing" as much as you like. Then, when you are editing, strike out every phrase in which it occurs, and see if the text works better without it. For example, unless you want to make it a specific quirk of one character that they keep saying it, I bet you could strike out every instance of "Another thing that I have noticed is that...".
     

Share This Page