Here is something to think about when you do a round of self-editing. We all have words we use too often. I tend to use “that” a lot and mostly it doesn’t need to be there. It’s just the way I talk and write. I have to be conscious not to put it in my work and I need to be deliberate in removing it.
I read a book a while back that has stayed with me for many months and has affected the way I write and read, and it’s opened my eyes to a weakness in much fiction writing, even in published books