This week I found a blog which talked about echoes i.e. the words you tend to repeat. I thought I knew mine, but then I looked at the blog author's list of the common echoes, and realised how many of those I use (and over-use!)
If you want to know what they are, here's the link: http://writersinthestorm.wordpress.com/2013/07/29/how-to-axe-repeat-offenders/
The blog also gives a link to word count site, where you can copy and paste a chapter and find out what words you've over-used. I put in my first chapter and O.M.G. - I was shocked! I never realised how much I use 'thing' , as in anything, something, nothing or plain thing or things. A 'find' on the full ms. in Word highlighted so many of these words. One of my most repeated was 'anything more' which I realise could be condensed (in most cases) to anymore.
Try it on a chapter. Exclude 'the' and 'it' words and put 200 in the 'how many words shall I list' option, and see what comes up!
Debra wrote last week about final edits. At this rate, it will be next year at this time before I finish the final edit of my ms!!! But it's a great exercise in working out alternative ways to say something in order to avoid these 'echoes'.