You must think I’m the worst writer on earth. Trashing my own work in broad daylight.
Working on a rewrite of a script I wrote when I wasn’t the dazzling talent I am today. Just barely noticed (this stuff is subtle and baffling and hiding under rocks where it’s hard to see, like a diamondback rattlesnake) that I had used the phrase, “I’m sorry.” a couple of times. A little tickle in the back of my head said, “Better check, there, bub.” So I did.
I had used “I’m sorry” said by a multitude of characters, a total of SIXTEEN times in the one script. Not in my entire body of work, you understand, but in one damn screenplay! I went through with a weedeater and hacked away at them, changing them to other things like “Oh God.” or “No one expects an anvil to come crashing through the ceiling” or stuff like that. After the weed-eat, I’m down to four instances of “I’m sorry” in a 117 page screenplay (which is too long!).
So, and I have no idea how to tell you to actually solve this problem, beware of phrases that repeat A LOT.