Writing and rewriting are a constant search for what it is one is saying.
The great enemy of clear language is insincerity. When there is a gap between one's real and one's declared aims, one tuns, as it were instinctively, to long words and exhausted idioms, like a cuttlefish, squirting out ink.
The indispensable characteristic of a good writer is a style marked by lucidity. HEMINGWAY
And how is clarity to be achieved? mainly by taking trouble; and by writing to serve people rather to impress them. F. L. LUCAS
A writer's job is sticking his neck out. SLOAN WILSON
The art of writing has for backbone some fierce attachment to an idea. VIRGINIA WOOLF
What gets my interest is the sense that a writer is speaking honestly and fully of what he knows well. WENDELL BERRY
It is in the hard, hard rock-pile labor of seeking to win, hold, or deserve a reader's interest that the pleasant agony of writing again comes in. JOHN MASON BROWN
My style of writing is chiefly grounded upon an early enthusiasm for [Thomas H.] Huxley, the greatest of all masters of orderly exposition. He taught me the importance of giving to every argument a simple structure. H. L. MENCKEN
The most emphatic place in clause or sentence is the end. This is the climax; and, during the momentary pause that follows, that last word continues, as it were, to reverberate in the reader's mind. It has, in fact, the last word. One should therefore think twice about what one puts at a sentence-end. F. L. LUCAS
Less is more, in prose as in architecture. DONALD HALL
In composing, as a general rule, run your pen through every other word you have written you have no idea what vigor it will give your style. SYDNEY SMITH
When we encounter a natural style, we are astonished and delighted for we expected to see an author, and we find a man. PASCAL
Sentences are not different enough to hold the attention unless they are dramatic. No ingenuity of varying structure will do. All that can save them is the speaking tone of voice somehow entangled in the woods and fastened to the page for the ear of the imagination. ROBERT FROST
Above all, we believe that naturalness is unnatural, that informality is unacceptable, and that individuality is unpardonable. TOTELARIAN CREED
To be nobody-but-yourself -- in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else -- means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight and never stop fighting. e. e. cummings
Don't expect your reader to accept a piece of writing that you wouldn't accept yourself. DONALD H. ROSS
Punctuation, to most people, is a set of arbitrary and rather silly rules you find in printers' style books an din the back pages of school grammars. Few people realize that is the most important single device for making things easier to read. RUDOLF FLESCH
Are you confused by this? You look confused. . .amused. . .or maybe a little repulsed. J. V. FLEMING
Good writers are those who keep the language efficient. That is to say, keep it accurate, keep it clear. EZRA POUND
For Judy, with gratitude
About a year ago a bright sophomore came by my office for his first writing conference of the term. (Introduction)
Books on writing tend to be windy, boring and impractical.
Example: "We're going to play golf today whether it rains or not."