The Dimwit's Dictionary: 5,000 Overused Words and Phrases and Alternatives to Them
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The Dimwit's Dictionary: 5,000 Overused Words and Phrases and Alternatives to Them

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  32 ratings  ·  5 reviews
This compilation of overused words and phrases is the ultimate tool for the writer who seeks to weed out common, tired language and replace it with concise writing.
Paperback, 400 pages
Published September 1st 2002 by Marion Street Press, Inc. (first published August 1st 2002)
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Hey, I know, let's all become the pompous vocabulary police and take all the personality out of our writing! Tedious to read and filled with unimaginative alternatives to what the authors believe are overused phrases (but are pretty much every phrase you've ever heard - hackneyed or not), this book is helpful only if you want to write like this (taken from a passage where one of the authors defends his use of acerbic commentary in the book):

"This pedagogy may strike some as unworkable, and perha...more
Wendy Jones
This is an excellent book and I wanted to give it a detailed review. I have done this on my blog so take a look and find out why I rate it so highly
Pia Veleno
Nowadays, this kind of thing would end up as an ongoing blog rant, or a mildly amusing Twitter account. I picked it up for reference, to help avoid cliche phrasing in my writing, but this wasn't helpful in that regard and I hesitate to leave it on my writing-reference bookshelf.

May be useful as entertainment, or for someone looking to write a farce of tired metaphors and eye roll inducing similes.
Ron Cooper
As a writer, I try to avoid time-worn phrases and trite words and it's much easier now that I have Fiske's book in my reference library. Learn to identify "wretched redundancies" and "moribund metaphors" and much more as Fiske's addresses how we butcher the English language and how we can correct our misguided course. Hats off to you, sir!
Cary Neeper
A good reminder of which phrases have been overused, with some good, some questionable, suggestions for alternates. I was surprised to find few missing. A few were so specific the could still be useful.
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The Dictionary of Disagreeable English: A Curmudgeon's Compendium of Excruciatingly Correct Grammar Poem, Revised: 54 Poems, Revisions, Discussions The Dictionary of Concise Writing: More Than 10,000 Alternatives to Wordy Phrases The Best Words: More than 200 of the Most Excellent, Most Desirable, Most Suitable, Most Satisfying Words Robert Hartwell Fiske's Dictionary of Unendurable English: A Compendium of Mistakes in Grammar, Usage, and Spelling with Commentary on Lexicographers and Linguists

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