Beware “turning” words, a word or phrase that helps shift your story to go in a new direction usually by telling rather than showing. A heavy reliance on them lends towards less action and less engagement with the reader.
Turning words to avoid: suddenly; then; out of nowhere; surprisingly; shockingly; seemed
Turning words: Suddenly, Kevin threw a punch at Ben.
Action words: Kevin’s fingers tightened into a ball and took a deep breath. He swung quickly and Ben’s eyes widened as he jerked backwards.
Turning words: It seemed to me like Alicia had no idea he would be here.
Action words: I watched Alicia’s mouth form a tiny ‘o’ and the color slowly started to drain from her cheeks as her eyes locked onto his.