Detailed guides to painful problems, treatments & more

Now basically rather “edited” 

 •  • by Paul Ingraham
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Weekly nuggets of pain science news and insight, usually 100-300 words, with the occasional longer post. The blog is the “director’s commentary” on the core content of a library of major articles and books about common painful problems and popular treatments. See the blog archives or updates for the whole site.

My low back pain book is now the third in my inventory to be professionally edited (at considerable expense). The changes are only obvious to grammar Nazis and punctuation nitpickers — Oxford commas now standard! Most readers will just experience a richer, creamier read without knowing exactly why. But to make this interesting, I’ll humiliate myself …

It seems I have a number of annoying prose flourishes that I was oblivious to. I overuse the word “generally” so badly that it seems like I must be getting paid for it. (Fun fact: as of now, there are still seven hundred and forty-two usages of the word “generally” still remaining on! Ka-ching!) Here are some other alarmingly overused words and phrases my merciless editor exposed:

  • unnecessary scare quotes
  • virtually
  • pretty (much)
  • bear in mind
  • there is little doubt
  • single best
  • ultimately
  • basically
  • rather
  • actually
  • simply
  • very
  • bit of a

There is little doubt this is “basically” rather embarrassing! But that’s pretty much why I simply hired the single best editor I could find.

In addition to the professional editing, I’ve also now logged about eighty noteworthy updates to my low back pain book since 2009, plus at least another hundred unlogged tweaks and touch-ups.