To a writer, redundancy of overused words stands out like a spectator's head blocking your view of the screen. Our eyes and minds remember so well when last that word was used. Then we tisk-tisk the author, and subconsciously run alternative word choices through our mind, wondering how the author and editors missed this.
But there's more to redundancy we should be looking for than just overused words as we edit our work. What about gestures?
Do we really need to read about a gesture if it means the same thing as the words we just heard in a character's speech?
"Yes," he nodded in agreement.
Wouldn't simply "Yes." suffice, or He nodded. Last I checked nodding is an agreeable state or positive response to someone or something, while shaking one's head is in disagreement or a negative response. Either the gesture or the spoken word should sufficiently relay the message we're trying to get across.
This all comes down to writing concisely and with power. If we write excellent dialogue, then the gestures required should be limited. If we describe expressive gestures, then dialogue may not be needed. How many silent messages do we send with our eyes, movement of a limb, or some other body part, that need no words attached to be certain the message is clear? Intermixing this type of communication throughout your story will make it more realistic, and interesting, too.
What spoken words and gestures do you tend to use that only up the word count with no valuable purpose because they constitute redundancy?
Surrendering to Him,