Why Clichés Are Apocalyptic

Apocalypse over. 2013 is next.

Apocalypse over. 2013 is next.

So, the apocalypse has come and gone, and 2013 is ready to rear its ugly head.

Do you think I’ve used too many clichés in the first sentence? Was it a fair shake of the sauce bottle, picture perfect, an oldie but a goody, or were you bored to tears of it?

I mean, the world nearly ended on December 21st. Can’t clichés be used in instances where the world is coming down to its knees?

Oh, sorry.

Unless the world is ending, you honestly shouldn’t be using clichés.

Clichés cause extreme boredom to your readers. They go, “Oh, not another one. I want something poetic, majestic; something that’ll change the way I think of your otherwise meh book.”

I must admit, I face this same problem. To think of a new way to express something is as hard as…um…uh.

It’s just easier to plonk in a “her golden hair fell down to her knees like a waterfall, in perfect curls,” but what on earth does this mean? And how many readers will you have left by the end of the chapter or paragraph.

Clichés like the golden hair one should be banned from being written. They are overdone. More overdone than your typical cliché and most people are sick of them.

There are some clichés that are acceptable. By the time I’ve written this, “dog eat dog” and “elephant in the room” will have grown old. Or are these overused as well?

Overall, you shouldn’t be using clichés, or fire and brimstone will rain down blonde curled waterfalls. Try and think of something original, something awesome that will be considered a cliché in a hundred years.

Still, clichés are better than horrible analogies. Comparing blonde curly hair to an exploding lemon drink is not going to cut ice with your audience.

What worked better there: the cliché or the analogy?

Caption

This is what you get when you mix both.

Well, I’ve learned two things.

  1. The apocalypse didn’t happen. Cue 2013 for the next end-of-world date that will also never occur.
  2. Clichés should be avoided, unless the alternative is catastrophic.

See you all in 2013. Living in Australia, the land of the flying emu kangaroos (I’m just kidding, I live nowhere near the kangaroos and emus), I’ll be in one of the first countries to see if there’s anything different. There won’t be.

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