Monday, December 2, 2013

THAT is why...

I can still see my dear Senior English teacher standing before us looking over her nose tipped glasses.

“The correct usage is ‘The book THAT I read’ not ‘The book I read.’ That instruction is probably ingrained in my DNA. Her excellent teaching writes every book right along with me, but in modern fiction, it isn’t necessary.

Thank heaven for the ‘Find’ feature in my word processing program. I tend to use THAT in sentences where it can easily be omitted without changing the meaning.

The word "that" is overused and rarely necessary except in the definitive sense. "What car?" "That car." "What car did you drive today?" "The same car ["that" is implied] I drove yesterday.”

In our quest to slash anything that doesn’t move the story forward, add  the unnecessary use of the word THAT to the list.
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  1. Yeah, I'm still re-teaching myself, even with my editing clients. Then we go overboard and remove all of them...even when some are needed, as you said. Thanks for this, Jodie!

  2. Love your comment that your English teachers writes every book alongside you. So true! I think the same of a couple of mine. Where would I be without their knowledge, patience, and instruction?
    And yeah, "that" is one of my pet peeves too! Mostly because it's so ingrained, I find myself using it even when I know I shouldn't. And for a perfectionist THAT just won't do. :-)

    1. True. We were well taught, though, weren't we? Love those English teachers. Thanks for stopping by:)