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The word 'and' is an indispensable conjoining tool in any form and discipline of writing. Although, a repetition of the word can make a paragraph too tedious to read, and it only lengthens a sentence unnecessarily.

Synonyms do exist: - together with

  • along with

  • with

  • as well as

  • in addition to

  • including

  • also, too, besides, furthermore, moreover

  • plus, what's more

But using these words under certain contexts doesn't fit or look right.

How exactly can 'and' be used sparingly

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Usually "and" is indeed dispensable and the fact that you wrote it is a clue to check if it is. Using that sentence as an example, I can eliminate "and" with a semicolon, or a period.

Usually "and" is indeed dispensable; the fact that you wrote it is a clue to check if it is.

Usually "and" is indeed dispensable. The fact that you wrote it is a clue to check if it is.

Another example:

He picked up the ball and threw it across the field. The dog chased after it at full gallop.

Can be transformed.

He picked up the ball. Waving it to get the dog's rapt attention, he threw it across the field. The dog chased after it at full gallop.

Sentence proximity links sentences, you don't have to do it grammatically. Readers understand that one thing follows another; so "and" is very seldom necessary. (Similarly, "then" is very seldom necessary.)

Sometimes "and" IS necessary to express simultaneity, but if you aren't talking about simultaneous properties or events, it can probably be eliminated by rewording, punctuation, or breaking sentences and adding material.

When you feel it IS absolutely the right word, then don't worry about it. Readers understand necessary words. It won't seem "excessive" if you only use it when you must.

"And" can also be a symptom of over-emphasis in description, too frequently trying to use two adjectives for emphasis when one would do.

  • I understand this, but in the case of novel writing, it becomes an issue. My lecturers have always complained about my penchant for 'and'. Furthermore, in the context of scientific writing, the words, moreover, furthermore, in addition, adding to this, with regards to - recompense for the absence of 'and'. I only struggle outside of the science discipline, perhaps because I'm only up to high school deep in literary skill. – user42083 Nov 30 at 12:33
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    @ChagatNahn My advice is for people writing fiction; I write novels. I also write academic papers. Novels are certainly different, but not about the use of "and". Just prohibit yourself from using it. Or when you do use it, try for a full 60 seconds to find a way around it. Even in academic writing, you don't have to say it. Instead of "Furthermore, in the context of..." above, you could just start the sentence "In the context of...". Perhaps you feel compelled to link each sentence to the previous. You don't have to. People can follow a concept without you constantly reminding them to do it. – Amadeus-Reinstate-Monica Nov 30 at 17:26

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