Great Rules of Writing, Possibly by William Safire

I occasionally want to refer someone to these amusing “rules,” so I decided to post them here for future reference. Enjoy!

  • Do not put statements in the negative form.
  • And don’t start sentences with a conjunction.
  • If you reread your work, you will find on rereading that a¬†great deal of repetition can be avoided by rereading and editing.
  • Never use a long word when a diminutive one will do.
  • Unqualified superlatives are the worst of all.
  • De-accession euphemisms.
  • If any word is improper at the end of a sentence, a linking verb is.
  • Avoid trendy locutions that sound flaky.
  • Last, but not least, avoid cliches like the plague.

I believe they were written by William Safire, but am not positive. If you know for sure, please feel free to comment!

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