Cringeworthy Words


What are the words in fiction that make you cringe when you see them and cause you to seriously second guess continuing on with the book.


Smirk. I can handle this a couple of times, but I immediately associate this word with an unlikable personality. It’s becoming more and more popular and only one definition our of like six uses it as a term of endearment, so the odds of people seeing it that one way are not in the writer’s favor. The mood of the scene really has to be set for me to not want to punch a character in the face when they say it.

coo, coos, cooed. People should only coo to babies. That’s it.

Orbs. I straight up cannot continue reading a book when people feel the need to replace the word ‘eyes’ with ‘orbs’. You can compare them to orbs if that’s the look you’re going for, but ‘eyes’ isn’t a word that should be or can be replaced with something like this. They are two completely different things.



No. Just no. Probably the most cringeworthy word i ever know


What does that even mean?


I think it means what you call someone older than you or something? The only thing i know is that it’s cringeworthy, especially when used in stories.


Retard - This word is highly demeaning to people who are disabled. I can’t stand even typing it or the sight of it, so I blurred it out. :weary: There are so may people that use it as an insult and then when you call them out, they’re like “I didn’t mean it like that…”. It’s like, why the heck did you say it? -_____-;


senpai is an upperclassman who mentors an underclassman, or kohai. This term is used most often in English in reference to anime and manga and originates from Japanese 先輩, “earlier colleague”. Used more broadly to mean “teacher” or “master.”

So, it basically means ‘master’ or ‘teacher’. Used especially on someone older than you. Not any less cringeworthy. It’s kinda the same thing as ‘daddy’, i guess? Except it’s japanese and i don’t think fictional characters use it when having babies…?.


I don’t think I’ve ever seen it in a book before. or at all.


Fully agree.


“purred” or “growled” used as a dialogue tag. Plz no.


Ah. Lucky then, it’s fine to call someone you like a “sweetheart”, “sweetie”, “cute” or something like that, i like these more than “senpai” and “daddy”.


I agree on “orbs”. Just say eyes, people. And if you’ve already used eyes a lot, then maybe it’s time to move on to another body part.

I don’t agree on “smirk”, but I haven’t come across it that much. The way I see it, you smirk when you’ve made a vulgar joke or something. Word meanings can change over time.

I can’t think of any cringeworthy words right now. I’ll come back to it.


I heard about “orbs” somewhere though i never saw any fanfic using it, it just sounds like a weird word for “eyes”. Just say “eyes”, it’s not that hard.


It’s supposed to mean what you said, yes… but… it’s SUPPOSED to be used for high schoolers in Japan who have seniors older than they are. It’s someone they look up to ad admire. It’s used a lot in a Japanese drama I watch, and that’s basically what it is. Anyone else that uses it who isn’t from Japan abuses the word and makes it really cringeworthy.


Fucken ‘purred’! I forgot to add that one. That is definitely cringe worthy, as is growled. I used to not mind ‘growled’ too much, then I kind of got over reading the type of personality it’s attached to. They both make me think of animal sexual role play or something. Not sexy.


Ah, i see. Sorry if i misunderstood or something, but yeah, people who aren’t Japanese can make it sound cringeworthy if they are not even using it correctly.


Oh, no… it’s fine. ^^; I just wanted to elaborate it more is all.


Yup. Luckily I haven’t seen a book use it for a while, but a couple of years ago it felt like that shit was everywhere.


Yeah, i didn’t read a story saying “orbs” and don’t recall reading one honestly. “eyes” isn’t that weird, right?


Non-Japanese people abuse this word by going “Notice me senpai” because it’s heavily abused in anime and such… so I can understand why it’s cringeworthy.


I could probably gloss over growled. But purred gives me creeper vibes.