The word gray, or grey, is one word where both forms are accepted by both a US and UK English spellchecker. So which is it? An easy way to remember: GrAy is for American English, and GrEy is for English English. There will be places that will prefer one form over the other. However, if in doubt, that simple rule will help.
Let punctuation do some of the work for you in dialogue. “Help me,” she shouted. Instead of a dialogue tag, just use an exclamation point. “Help me!” The same can be said for asked and the question mark. “How can I help?”
All of us need to breathe, and our characters should be the same. However, be careful with the repetitive use of those actions: taking a deep breath, sighing, remembering to breathe. Search for them, and ensure that you haven’t overused them.
During a backwards edit, you read a manuscript from the last sentence backwards to the first. When you do this, you’re unable to focus on the story; sentences lose their contextual meaning. As a consequence you focus entirely on the words. (View post for more information.)