Avoid Like the Plague

I recently came across this article that listed 15 clichés writers should avoid like the plague. The article said that, “The hardest part about cutting clichés is they are so widely known they just fall off the tip of your tongue (cliché). If you spot any of these phrases in your writing, pull out your red pen (another cliché).”

Here are the aforementioned 15 clichés listed in the article.

Writing on the wall
Whirlwind tour
Patience of Job
Never a dull moment
Sands of time
Paying the piper
March of history
Hook, line, and sinker
Long arm of the law
In the nick of time
Leave no stone unturned
Fall on deaf ears
Cool as a cucumber
Cry over spilled milk
Champing at the bit

I thought it might be fun to write a posts that is essentially nothing but these clichés. Here it is. Let me know what you think.


There was never a dull moment in Donald’s life, but nonetheless, as the sands of time slipped by, he could see the writing on the wall. He knew that his whirlwind tour would soon be coming to an end and that he would eventually wind up having to pay the piper. There were only so many people who would buy his lies hook, line, and sinker. Eventually, his bullshit would fall upon deaf ears. And there were those who were champing at the bit waiting for him to get his comeuppance.

But there was no point in crying over spilled milk. In the past he had always been able to avoid being apprehended by the long arm of the law just in the nick of time. Still, as always, Donald remained cool as a cucumber. He would leave no stone unturned, even if it took the patience of Job, to avoid going to jail. He was sure that, in the long march of history, people, with their short attention spans, would eventually forget about his indiscretions and forgive his trespasses.

14 thoughts on “Avoid Like the Plague

  1. ellacraigwrites June 1, 2021 / 9:16 am

    In a weird way, that was a fun read😝 And to use another cliche – thanks for the word salad!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Marilyn Armstrong June 1, 2021 / 9:30 am

    For three years, I was the Editor (at Doubleday Book Clubs) for the Romance Library (as well as the American Garden Guild). They invented the Romance Library and why i of all people got picked as the “editor” (they changed my name to something more romantic — Jennifer Stone — I guess because Marilyn Kraus (that was my name back then) didn’t cut the romantic mustard.

    I had to do a flap writeup and two or three promotional writeups for each volume. Not only did these contain clichés, they were nothing BUT clichés. Actually, we had a special cliché group. We worked in small cubicles, so when you needed a different cliché from your usual ones, you stood up and called out “Need new cliché for whirlwind romance.” You’d get call backs from all the other writers — and some of the editors and artists too. I had lists of clichés pinned to my corkboard. The books are 100% cliché anyway, so why should the promos be any different?

    Sometimes, a cliché is perfect and can be very funny.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Fandango June 1, 2021 / 9:31 am

      I actually had fun writing my all clichés post.

      Like

  3. Alice DeForest June 1, 2021 / 3:17 pm

    Too funny. Donald should keep in mind that folks know a “leopard never changes its spots”

    Liked by 2 people

  4. JT Twissel June 1, 2021 / 4:28 pm

    I once worked with an editor who would change all the cliches in the dialogue between my characters. I had to point out that normal people are thick as thieves with cliches Ho!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Taswegian1957 June 2, 2021 / 2:56 am

    I wonder if you should add “avoid like the plague” to the list? As for Donald, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.

    Liked by 1 person

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