Rules for writing well

What follows isn’t mine. It’s rules and guidelines from a random website I stumbled across.


Everything you write should be easy to understand. Clarity of writing usually follows clarity of thought. Take time to think about what you’re going to say, then say it as simply as possible. Keep these rules in mind whenever you’re writing on behalf of the studio.

Use small words. Using small words compels you to think about what you are writing. Even difficult ideas can be broken down into small words.

Use short sentences. Keep sentences short and get to the point. Readers might be interested in what you have to say, but don’t have much time to read.

Make clear statements. Every sentence should be a clear statement. If a sentence is incomplete or could easily be misunderstood, rewrite it.

Build clear stories. A good paragraph is a series of clear, linked statements. Make sure every sentence adds to the statement that went before.

Don’t use jargon. Jargon makes writing less accessible. Technical terms should be used in their proper context; do not use them out of it.

Don’t use decoration. Don’t use decorative and flowery language. Focus on using only the words you need to communicate an idea clearly.

The standards for good writing are clarity and efficiency. You can develop good writing by editing with a careful eye to remove unnecessary words, decorative language, and jargon.

Posted by Nick Freiling

Founder/Director of PeopleFish. I write on technology, market research and economics. Bylines at Startup Grind, FEE, the American Enterprise Institute and the Mises Institute.

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