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Some Things Bear Repeating (Over and Over Again)

Over the course of many moves, I sadly misplaced my copy of The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr. and E.B. White. Hands down, it’s the best guide to writing ever written. In a nod  to White, blogger Dean Rieck has developed an equally useful and incredibly concise one-page writing guide that you should print out and paste to your computer. 

Here’s a taste:

Good writing is like a store window. It should be clean and clear, providing an unobstructed view of the contents within.Get to the point. Say what you mean. Use specific nouns.Use short paragraphs. Look at any newspaper and notice how short the paragraphs are. That’s done to make reading easier since our brains take in information better when ideas are broken into small chunks.

Since your purpose is to communicate and not impress, simple words work better than big ones. Write “get” instead of “procure.” Write “use” rather than “utilize.”

Photo of Lead Type from jm3 on – used with gratitude under a Creative Commons license — click for terms.

P.S. — Check out How To Start a Blog if you’ve been thinking of doing just that.


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