I am as guilty of using cliches as any other writer, and this morning while editing, I came across one particular line that had me laughing at my own writing.
“Her eyes dropped to the floor”
It might not be that funny, unless you live in my head. I now have an image of my poor character’s eyes falling out of her head and rolling across the carpet. Perhaps I watch too many spoofs and too much Monty Python…
But what other cliches can be taken literally to give the reader hilarious visions?
- “He had his father’s eyes” – anyone who has seen the film Hot Shots will know where I’m going with this one…
- “Her lips were like petals” – here my brain does my Step-Dad’s favourite lines of “her lips were like petals, bicycle pedals. Her cheeks were like peaches, football pitches”.
- “She rolled her eyes at me” – another one of my Step-Dad’s… “So I rolled them back to her.”
- “She floated across the room” – unless she’s a ghost I don’t see how she can float…
- “His stomach was a ripple of muscle” – I see a stomach wiggling in and like a belly dancer. Or a flowing river.
- “Bee-stung lips” – I’ve been stung by a bee, and this just sounds painful, not attractive.
What more can you think of?