20 RULES FOR GOOD WRITING


1.   Use plain, conversational language.
      Write as you talk.
2.   Write to express, not to impress.
3.   Write clearly.
4.   Avoid gobbledygook and jargon.
5.   Prefer the plain word to the fancy.
6.   Prefer the familiar word to the unfamiliar.
7.   Prefer the Saxon word to the Romance.
8.   Prefer nouns and verbs to adjectives and adverbs.
9.   Prefer concrete (picture) nouns and action verbs.
10. Never use a long word when a short one will do.
11. Master the simple declarative sentence.
12. Prefer the simple sentence to the complicated.
13. Vary your sentence length.
14. Use the active voice.
15. Put statements in a positive form.
16. Use short paragraphs.
17. Cut needless words, sentences and paragraphs.
18. Put the words you want to emphasize at the beginning or end of your sentence.
19. Revise and rewrite. Improvement is always possible.
20. Develop a natural style.

 

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