From Self Editing Tips #2 – Write Anything:
Annihilate the words ‘that’, ‘then’ , ‘there are’ or ‘there is’ or ‘to be.’ . Its a rare piece of text which requires either of these words to show up regularly or as a valuable or necessary participant. There are always better ways to write sentence without having to use those phrases.
The words ‘that’ and ‘there’ are two I try to watch for in my own writing. I know I over use them. Practice taking them out as you are writing. You can see how your writing has more punch when you eliminate these space takers. There are some words, like these, which wind you down rather than wind things up.