I'm playing around with AutoCrit trying to improve something and I was looking at its cliche report. My most flagged one is the phrase "as if". But I use it like this:

The whole thing seemed as if it would give way at any moment.

Is this still considered cliche or bad form? I get why the retort "As if!" would be.

closed as primarily opinion-based by Edwin Ashworth, Nigel J, curiousdannii, Skooba, Rob_Ster Dec 11 '17 at 16:30

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There is nothing wrong with using "as if" or "as though" in your writing as long as you do so correctly and the example you provided was pleasant.

What sort of writing are you doing that you are so concerned about trimming cliches? A well used cliche can be a wonderful thing. And i disagree that these are even cliche. There are similar phrases in the French language.

as if (or as though)

phrase of as

1. as would be the case if. "she behaved as if he weren't there"

Translate as if to French


  1. comme si

  2. tant que

Source: Google Dictionary

  • Thank you it's science fiction. Cliches is one of the things autocrit says you should fix :). But it's not very clear about it. – Some Hardware Guy Dec 11 '17 at 1:03
  • In general cliches are to be avoided, but using them sparingly is okay. It is important to come up with your own writing style. While some editors may disagree, a writer is not required to follow all of the rules all of the time. In fact a few of my favorite authors have a penchant for breaking the rules gracefully. Double negatives and the like. The book Sometimes a Great Notion by Ken Kesey is riddled with the words okedoke and okeydokey, which aren't even words. Have you read The Last Question by Isaac Asimov? – Jesse Ivy Dec 11 '17 at 1:55

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