Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago · 2 min. reading time · visibility 0 ·

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How to write good.

How to write good.rrr

4 Pg a—————
viata iecivd

RC rn NY

I saw these lists years ago.  They were circulated long before there was an Internet.  I found them again recently  at

The first set of rules was written by Frank L. Visco and originally published in the June 1986 issue of Writers' digest.
  • Avoid Alliteration. Always.
  • Prepositions are not words to end sentences with.
  • Avoid cliches like the plague. (They're old hat.)
  • Employ the vernacular.
  • Eschew ampersands & abbreviations, etc.
  • Parenthetical remarks (however relevant) are unnecessary.
  • It is wrong to ever split an infinitive.
  • Contractions arent necessary.
  • Foreign words and phrases are not apropos.
  • One should never generalize.
  • Eliminate quotations. As Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, I hate quotations. Tell me what you know.
  • Comparisons are as bad as cliches.
  • Dont be redundant; dont use more words than necessary; its highly superfluous.
  • Profanity sucks.
  • Be more or less specific.
  • Understatement is always best.
  • Exaggeration is a billion times worse than understatement.
  • One word sentences? Eliminate.
  • Analogies in writing are like feathers on a snake.
  • The passive voice is to be avoided.
  • Go around the barn at high noon to avoid colloquialisms.
  • Even if a mixed metaphor sings, it should be derailed.
  • Who needs rhetorical questions?

The second set of rules is derived from William Safire's Rules for Writers.

  • Parenthetical words however must be enclosed in commas.
  • It behooves you to avoid archaic expressions.
  • Avoid archaeic spellings too.
  • Don't repeat yourself, or say again what you have said before.
  • Don't use commas, that, are not, necessary.
  • Do not use hyperbole; not one in a million can do it effectively.
  • Never use a big word when a diminutive alternative would suffice.
  • Subject and verb always has to agree.
  • Placing a comma between subject and predicate, is not correct.
  • Use youre spell chekker to avoid mispeling and to catch typograhpical errers.
  • Don't repeat yourself, or say again what you have said before.
  • Use the apostrophe in it's proper place and omit it when its not needed.
  • Don't never use no double negatives.
  • Poofread carefully to see if you any words out.
  • Hopefully, you will use words correctly, irregardless of how others use them.
  • Eschew obfuscation.
  • No sentence fragments.
  • Don't indulge in sesquipedalian lexicological constructions.
  • A writer must not shift your point of view.
  • Don't overuse exclamation marks!!
  • Place pronouns as close as possible, especially in long sentences, as of 10 or more words, to their antecedents.
  • Writing carefully, dangling participles must be avoided.
  • If any word is improper at the end of a sentence, a linking verb is.
  • Avoid trendy locutions that sound flaky.
  • Everyone should be careful to use a singular pronoun with singular nouns in their writing.
  • Always pick on the correct idiom.
  • The adverb always follows the verb.
  • Take the bull by the hand and avoid mixing metaphors.
  • If you reread your work, you can find on rereading a great deal of repetition can be by rereading and editing.
  • And always be sure to finish what
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Gert Scholtz

5 years ago #41

Kevin Pashuk Humorous and instructive. It was Douglas Adams who said: "I love deadlines, I love the whooshing noise they make as they go by" . Thank you Kevin for an enjoyable read.

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #40

I are happy that you am Joel.

Joel Anderson

5 years ago #39

I feel more better for having read it too.
Oh, some of those hurt my eyes and mind, Kevin Pashuk! But they're funny for sure, and thanks!

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #37

Digging up an old post to thank you for your Friday Funnies Susan Rooks

Javier 🐝 CR

5 years ago #36

thanks Federico \u00c1lvarez San Mart\u00edn

Javier 🐝 CR

5 years ago #35

yes @phil@philPhil Friedman

Phil Friedman

5 years ago #34

@Kevin Pashuk ( with CC to Javier Javier C\u00e1mara Rica) - For the record, beBee needs to remove the "remove" button from the right side of the mobile comments screens, or at least provide a confirmation step or better an "undo" feature. Right-handed scrolling down a list of comments makes it too easy to accidentally remove a comment, then not recoverable, as happened to me in your case and several others. If engagement is important, this is an important issue. For having read a piece and made a sincere comment (not just a one line quip or an attaboy), it is disheartening to accidentally remove that comment while looking at the author's reply.

Mamen 🐝 Delgado

5 years ago #33

OMG!!! I'm going to rewrite all my posts!!!! 😂

Ken Boddie

5 years ago #32

Ha Ha the Great Wall of LI to fully enclose the Dark Side. To keep writers in or to keep outsider pollinated bees from visiting little flowers? 🌻 ⛔️ 🐝🐝🐝 #42

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #31

Thanks Maja Vujovic. You get a point to recognize that even the title points out a grammatical error.

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #30

Thanks for visiting and commenting Phil Friedman. I can identify.... Autocorrect is my worst enema

Phil Friedman

5 years ago #29

Not "not", but rather "now". Out, out, damned autocorrector!

Phil Friedman

5 years ago #28

Oh poor, poor Kevin. You will not receive a slew of comments telling you that "how to write good" should be "how to write well." All without those people stopping to read or appreciate the humor of the piece beyond the title. Just goes to show that "intelligent criticism" is a moronic ox -- or some such. Cheers!
I had the same thoughts because I have shared articles from LI in beBee with success.

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #26

I did notice that it took a long time this morning for beBee to actually link to Susan's post on LI. I wonder if LI has built a wall to prevent authors from escaping? :)
Thank you Kevin Pashuk. I was having some sort of an issue getting Susan's article to post correctly.

Ken Boddie

5 years ago #24

Ha Ha! You punch me! #38

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #23

Some analogies do work well Zack Thorn. My favourite is 'like a screen door on a submarine' to describe something useless.

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #22

Can we clarify please Ken Boddie, which direction the ......👊 💥 ! ! ! is going?

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #21

That last rule is not exclusive to writing. My darling wife (who I love very much) is a Jedi in the use of the unfinished sentence. Somehow I missed my Jedi training to automatically know what the end of the sentence should be, and it usually lands me in hot water.

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #20

Thanks Philip

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #19

Keep working on getting Susan over her Franci Eugenia Hoffman. I've just posted her latest LI article over here on beBee so the folks here can understand why we want her to join this tribe.

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #18


Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #17

Yes, we, have, like a fish on a bicycle.

Ken Boddie

5 years ago #16

I'm guilty of almost everything on the first list Kevin Pashuk and proud of it - but if you ever catch me on the second list ......👊 💥 ! ! !

Dean Owen

5 years ago #15

I love that second list Kevin Pashuk. I never use no double negatives! And that last rule on the list is
I tried to share a LI article by Susan Rooks on beBee. I copied the link to Susan's article and when I pasted it as a share on beBee, a different LI article populated. I am trying to lure Susan over to beBee.

Mohammed Abdul Jawad

5 years ago #13

Aha...the quickest way to chisel one's writing skills and be off from grammatical mistakes. :)

don kerr

5 years ago #12

Good old fashioned advice.

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #11

They done learned me good in school Don Kerr

don kerr

5 years ago #10

It ain't wrong!

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #9

Let's try this out and see if you get this Pam. Reply back if you were notified.
I agree. I would love to see Susan become a beBee bee.

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #7

You are very welcome Qamar Ali Khan. The English language has been described as a moving target. I have the utmost respect for those who learn it as a second language and become fluent. I've been working at it since birth and still get discombobulated.

Wayne Yoshida

5 years ago #6

Funny. Thanks for sharing this.

Qamar Ali Khan

5 years ago #5

This is an amazing finding Kevin Pashuk! A compact but great knowledge is hidden in these few lines. Thank you sir!

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #4

Thanks Franci Eugenia Hoffman. I follow Susan... We should convince her to #beBee! (Oops, there are those darn ellipses again!)
Sharing on LinkedIn.This should be interesting to Susan Rooks (The Grammar Goddess).

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #2

Paul \, I have a problem with ellipses... ... I really want the reader to pause for the punchline... ... but then the grammar particularians jump in and tell me I'm using them incorrectly.

Kevin Pashuk

5 years ago #1

For you Paul \

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