Delete nulls from your novel, short story

Sometimes the only purpose of a story’s sentence is to say that nothing happened. Such sentences are called “nulls”. An example would be the sentence “He said nothing.” Fortunately, nulls are easy to spot: If your story were occurring in real life, nulls would be the points where nothing happens.

Nulls can be deleted from the story. They almost always reduce the piece’s immediacy and dramatic tension.


My name is Rob Bignell. I’m an affordable, professional editor who runs Inventing Reality Editing Service, which meets the manuscript needs of writers both new and published. I also offer a variety of self-publishing services. During the past decade, I’ve helped more than 300 novelists and nonfiction authors obtain their publishing dreams at reasonable prices. I’m also the author of the 7 Minutes a Day… writing guidebooks, four nonfiction hiking guidebook series, and the literary novel Windmill. Several of my short stories in the literary and science fiction genres also have been published.