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Take the Train Out of Cliche Town

When I teach creative writing, as I'm doing this semester, I try to find funny ways to keep harping on the same old lessons. After all, a great deal of the mistakes and problems I see in student work can be boiled down to about three repeating themes, and of those, about eighty percent fall into the category of cliched language. A cliche doesn't just represent an over-used phrase, image, or idiom; it also represents a fundamental lack of imagination, a deep-down laziness of language. (Read more »)

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