Writing Tips

Come up with by the group at the pub, put together by Dan, some tips on writing.

“There are three rules of good writing. Trouble is, no-one can agree what they are.” Somerset Maugham

Suggestions for improving your writing.

1) Take out all adverbs and adjectives.

2) Once you have done that, strengthen the verbs (i.e. He ran quicky is much better expressed as; he raced, he careered, he pelted etc.)

3) Replace only the essential adverbs and adjectives

4) Turn all passive sentences into active ones

5) Remove AND, BUT, HOWEVER, SO and MEANWHILE from the beginning of sentences.

6) Dialogue should be clear about who is speaking without constant use of attribution (he or she said, he exclaimed, she retorted etc). Kill most of it.

7) Avoid tautology, cliche and solecism.

8) Don’t trust your spell-checker.

The Literature Network also have 7 tips for being a Great Writer.


Filed under Writing

3 responses to “Writing Tips

  1. Dan

    Just a note to clarify: those tips from the pub are actually taken from a lecture given by John Jenkins (ex editor of the Daily Telegraph). I do not claim they are my work and in case of legal action I will cave in, mewling and puking like a baby.

  2. Jim Worrad

    Which, oddly enough, is what I do at the pub.

  3. Of course it omits the absolute number one rule about writing:

    You do not talk about writing.

    No, wait, that’s Fight Club.

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