Published in


The Elements of Style by E. B. White

Remember your favorite book notes with Twos ✌️ (CLICK HERE)

Writing is hard, even for authors who do it all the time

Write in a way that comes naturally. Revise and rewrite. Do not explain too much. Be clear

Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts. This requires not that the writer make all sentences short or avoid all detail and treat subjects only in outline, but that every word tell

Cut “this is a subject that” to “this subject”

Trim “used for fuel purposes” down to “used for fuel”

Worse to be irresolute than to be wrong

If you don’t know how to pronounce a word, say it loud!

Why compound ignorance with inaudibility? Why run and hide?

The reader was in serious trouble most of the time, floundering in a swamp, and that it was the duty of anyone attempting to write English to drain this swamp quickly and get the reader up on the dry ground, or at least to throw a rope

The pronominal possessives hers, its, theirs, yours, and ours have no apostrophe

1. Form the possessive singular of nouns by adding ‘s

Follow this rule whatever the final consonant. Charles’s

2. In a series of three or more terms with a single conjunction, use a comma after each term except the last

3. Enclose parenthetic expressions between commas.

A name or a title in direct address is parenthetic

No comma, however, should separate a noun from a restrictive term of identification

Nonrestrictive relative clauses are parenthetic, as are similar clauses introduced by conjunctions indicating time or place. Commas are therefore needed. A nonrestrictive clause is one that does not serve to identify or define the antecedent noun

4. Place a comma before a conjunction introducing an independent clause

5. Do not join independent clauses with a comma

The correct punctuation is a semi-colon

6. Do not break sentences in two

Do not use periods for commas

7. Use a colon after an independent clause to introduce a list of particulars, an appositive, an amplification, or an illustrative quotation

9. The number of the subject determines the number of the verb

11. A participial phrase at the beginning of a sentence must refer to the grammatical subject

14. Use the active voice

15. Put statements in a positive form

If your sentence admits a doubt, your writing will lack authority

Save the auxiliaries would, should, could, may, might, and can fit situations involving real uncertainty

The surest way to arouse snd hold the readers attention is by being specific, definite, and concrete

17. Omit needless words

An article or a preposition applying to all the members of a series must either be used only before the first term or else be repeated before each term

20. Keep related words together

21. In summaries, keep to one tense

22. Place the emphatic words of a sentence at the end

Do not draw attention to a colloquialism or a slang word by enclosing it in quotation marks

Exclamation marks are to be reserved for use after true exclamations or commands

Write with nouns and verbs, not with adjectives and adverbs

Revising is part of writing

Avoid the use of qualifiers

Shared from Twos ✌️




Twos is an app and website that helps you simply remember *things*. Visit and download Twos for free on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store to simply remember things today.

Recommended from Medium

This People-Pleaser is Pissed Off

Pinterest for Bloggers: How I Drive 10,000+ Visitors per Month to My Blog from Pinterest

Hey Medium, Can You Help Me With My Marketing

Use One Simple Tool to Help You Succeed on Medium

How Transcription Eases the Memoir Writing Process

How To Use Google Keep To Efficiently Manage Your Writing Topics


Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Parker Klein ✌️

Parker Klein ✌️

Ex-Googler, Programmer, Reader, Writer, and Creator of Twos ✌️ ( the best place to write *things* down

More from Medium

4 Ways I “Won” NaNoWriMo Without Actually Winning

A typewriter, blank sheet of paper, notebook, pen, and a cup of coffee on a table.

If you’re an author — then how do you make money giving away free books?

The making of a book about Sicily: travel sketches and memories

Writing, Waiting, Zines, and Pei Wei