Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Too much of a good thing?

Cricket writing, like most sports writing, is full of cliches. Its hard to avoid them, and a really good writer would go the extra mile (see, cliche!) to not work them into his piece.

Given this, I was impressed to see Dileep Premchandran, one of Cricinfo's staff of talented Indian writers, use the word "coruscating" in the course of describing an innings. It was a new and fresh word, and I loved the the variety it brought into the daily bulletins.

Now, I fear, Premchandran is overusing the word. I saw it again, just recently, and immediately remembered it being used for the first time. I found this reaction strange. After all, I don't react the same way when someone uses "scintillating" or "stunning" again and again. So, perhaps its very novelty makes it stand out in a way that other, more common words don't. Still, I went and googled "Dileep coruscating" and sure enough, it pops up a lot in his pieces. Hmmm..maybe he does overuse it, after having gotten excessively attached to it (for a long time, I used semicolons obsessively and then, having been exposed to em-dashes, began using them incessantly).

So, I don't know, Dileep, get rid of "coruscating". Its done its work, you're just going to need to find another word. But thanks anyway, for introducing some diversity into the writing.


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