“On Writing Well”

… the secret of good writing is to strip every sentence to its cleanest components …

Clear thinking becomes clear writing: one can’t exist without the other. It is impossible for a muddy thinker to write good English.

The writer must therefore constantly ask himself: What am I trying to say? Surprisingly often, he doesn’t know. Then he must look at what he has written and ask: Have I said it? Is it clear to someone encountering the subject for the first time? 

Writing is hard work. A clear sentence is no accident. Very few sentences come out right the first time. or the third. Keep thinking and rewriting until you say what you want to say.

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