Rules to improve your writing

The advice from "The Elements of Style" by Strunk and White and "On Writing Well" by Zinsser. The primary philosophy is that if you can't write well, then you haven't thought it through. The act of writing is an act of reasoning.

  1. Practice in a strong feedback loop. This applies for anything, not just writing.
  2. Ruthlessly reduce your sentences. Repeat until you can't eliminate or combine any more words.
  3. Avoid adverbs. Use "dashed" or "sprinted" instead of "ran quickly". Learn more words.
  4. Avoid weasel words like "should" "could" "might". Take a stance and give concrete reasons.
  5. Use concrete data over descriptors. "+5% profit" over "increased profit".
  6. Write in active voice. Look up the "by Zombies" trick.
  7. Use the simplest word that maintains your meaning. No one needs to use the word "utilize".

Published on: 4th February, 2021