How to Write

How to Write…

At Quirk, we value clarity of expression. Jargon and overly complex writing result in lazy thinking and vagueness, not greater understanding. 

It would be presumptuous for me to tell anyone how to write. Thankfully, others have done that for me:   

From David Ogilvy 


From George Orwell.

His six rules (see below) are most often referred to, but the whole essay is also worth reading. 

He is not being sentimental or old fashioned, or a ‘stickler’ for grammar, but urging clarity of meaning – “…above all…let the meaning choose the word, and not the other way around.”

The rules: 

I also think the example he gives of the impact of ‘modern language’ (in 1947!) is both funny and troubling. It could equally apply to 2019:


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