Bringing up the question wasn't as hard as he'd thought. (It was) Definitely easier than the letter he'd have to write later.

I tried to find a similar example on Google Books. Unfortunately, since I can't search "definitely" in uppercase, I couldn't find any.

Is this type of omission grammatical or at least common/permissible in colloguial English?

Context: informal writing/fiction writing

  • 2
    See it all the time. Works great in a spy novel. Not so good in a long business letter.
    – J.R.
    Commented Aug 21, 2019 at 14:07
  • I can't say that I see it in writing, nor would I use it in writing (except perhaps as a direct quote from a character) - but it's quite common in speech (and I've been known to so use it). Commented Aug 21, 2019 at 14:10

1 Answer 1


Colloquially, yes. The second sentence is technically a sentence fragment, because by removing "it was" you remove the subject and verb. However, this is a natural drop in speech. For informal/fiction writing, this is fine. Definitely permissible. :)

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