Five great quotations about writing style

“A scrupulous writer, in every sentence that he writes, will ask himself at least four questions, thus: 1. What am I trying to say? 2. What words will express it? 3. What image or idiom will make it clearer? 4. Is this image fresh enough to have an effect?” – George Orwell

“Say all you have to say in the fewest possible words, or your reader will be sure to skip them; and in the plainest possible words or he will certainly misunderstand them.” – John Ruskin

“It’s not about the writing. It’s about the feelings behind the words.” – Takayuki Ikkaku, Arisa Hosaka and Toshihiro Kawabata, “Animal Crossing: Wild World

“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.” – William Safire, “Great Rules of Writing”

“Be obscure clearly.” – E.B. White