Mark Twain’s Writing Rules

In addition to these large rules there are some little ones.  These require that the author shall

12.  Say what he is proposing to say, not merely come near it.
13.  Use the right word, not its second cousin.
14.  Eschew surplusage.
15.  Not omit necessary details.
16.  Avoid slovenliness of form.
17.  Use good grammar.
18.  Employ a simple and straightforward style.

Twain, Mark. “Fennimore Cooper’s Literary Offenses.” In Mark Twain: Collected Tales, Sketches, Speeches and Essays, 1891-1910, edited by Louis J. Budd. New York: Library of America, 1992, 181-182.

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