<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/loose.dtd"> <head> <META NAME="DESCRIPTION" CONTENT="A list of paradoxical, self-contradictory rules for writers."> <META NAME="KEYWORDS" CONTENT=", paradox, paradoxes."> <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=ISO-8859-1"> <meta http-equiv="Content-Language" content="EN-GB"> <title>Paradoxical Rules for Writers - curiouser.co.uk</title> <LINK REL="stylesheet" HREF="style3.css" TYPE="text/css"> <script type="text/javascript"> var _gaq = _gaq || []; _gaq.push(['_setAccount', 'UA-13092328-1']); _gaq.push(['_trackPageview']); (function() { var ga = document.createElement('script'); ga.type = 'text/javascript'; ga.async = true; ga.src = ('https:' == document.location.protocol ? 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(They're old hat.)</li> <li> Also, always avoid annoying alliteration.</li> <li> Be more or less specific.</li> <li> Parenthetical remarks (however relevant) are (usually) unnecessary.</li> <li> Also too, never, ever use repetitive redundancies.</li> <li> No sentence fragments.</li> <li> Contractions aren't necessary and shouldn't be used.</li> <li> Foreign words and phrases are not apropos.</li> <li> Do not be redundant; do not use more words than necessary; it's highly superfluous.</li> <li> One should NEVER generalize.</li> <li> Comparisons are as bad as clichs.</li> <li> Don't use no double negatives.</li> <li> Eschew ampersands & abbreviations, etc.</li> <li> One-word sentences? Eliminate.</li> <li> Analogies in writing are like feathers on a snake.</li> <li> The passive voice is to be ignored.</li> <li> Eliminate commas, that are, not necessary. Parenthetical words however should be enclosed in commas.</li> <li> Never use a big word when a diminutive one would suffice.</li> <li> DO NOT use exclamation points and all caps to emphasize!!!</li> <li> Use words correctly, irregardless of how others use them.</li> <li> Understatement is always the absolute best way to put forth earth shaking ideas.</li> <li> Use the apostrophe in it's proper place and omit it when its not needed.</li> <li> Eliminate quotations. As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "I hate quotations. Tell me what you know."</li> <li> If you've heard it once, you've heard it a thousand times: Resist hyperbole; not one writer in a million can use it correctly.</li> <li> Puns are for children, not groan readers.</li> <li> Go around the barn at high noon to avoid colloquialisms.</li> <li> Even IF a mixed metaphor sings, it should be derailed.</li> <li> Who needs rhetorical questions?</li> <li> Exaggeration is a billion times worse than understatement.</li> <li> The passive voice should never be used. </li> <li> Do not put statements in the negative form. </li> <li> Verbs have to agree with their subjects. </li> <li> A writer must not shift your point of view. </li> <li> Place pronouns as close as possible, especially in long sentences of 10 or more words, to their antecedents. </li> <li> Writing carefully, dangling participles must be avoided. </li> <li> If any word is improper at the end of a sentence, a linking verb is. </li> <li> Take the bull by the hand and avoid mixing metaphors. </li> <li> Avoid trendy locutions that sound flaky. </li> <li> Everyone should be careful to use a singular pronoun with singular nouns in their writing. </li> <li> Always pick on the correct idiom. </li> <li> The adverb always follows the verb.</li> <li> Be careful to use the rite homonym.</li> <li> Proofread carefully to see if you any words out.</li> </ul> <p style="margin-top: 3em"> Thank you to Jenni Larsen for submitting these rules to curiouser.co.uk. </p> </div> <div id="share" style="margin-top: 4em"> <!-- AddThis Button BEGIN --> <div class="addthis_toolbox addthis_default_style"> <a href="http://www.addthis.com/bookmark.php?v=250&amp;username=onecentrob" class="addthis_button_compact">Share</a> <span class="addthis_separator">|</span> <a class="addthis_button_preferred_1"></a> <a class="addthis_button_preferred_2"></a> <a class="addthis_button_preferred_3"></a> </div> <script type="text/javascript">var addthis_config = {"data_track_clickback":true};</script> <script type="text/javascript" src="http://s7.addthis.com/js/250/addthis_widget.js#username=onecentrob"></script> <!-- AddThis Button END --> </div> <div class="center" style="margin-top: 5em"> <div> <a href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/index.htm"> HOME </a> I <a href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/puzzles"> PUZZLES </a> I <a href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/paradoxes"> PARADOXES </a> I <a href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/illusions"> ILLUSIONS </a> I <a href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/poems"> POEMS </a> I <a href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/quotations"> QUOTATIONS </a> I <a href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/games"> GAMES </a> I <a href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/facts"> FACTS </a> </div> <div style="margin-bottom:3em; margin-top: 1em; font-size: 70%"> <A href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/stranger">STRANGER </a> I <A href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/donate">CONTRIBUTE </a> I <A href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/contact">CONTACT </a> I <A href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/runciblespoonsociety">JOIN THE SOCIETY </a> I <A href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/books">BOOKS </a> I <A href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/links">LINKS </a> I <A href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/privacy/privacy.htm">PRIVACY STATEMENT </a> I <A href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/sitemap.htm">SITE MAP </a> I <A href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/google.htm">SEARCH </a> </div> <div class="bottom_ads"> <script type="text/javascript"><!-- google_ad_client = "pub-2185628889904477"; /* 728x90, created 10/11/10 */ google_ad_slot = "6906520196"; google_ad_width = 728; google_ad_height = 90; //--> </script> <script type="text/javascript" src="http://pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/show_ads.js"> </script> </div> <p style="margin-top:3em"> &copy; 2000 <a href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk">curiouser.co.uk </a>All rights reserved. </p> </div> </div> </div> <div id="consent" class="consent"> <p>By continuing to use this site you consent to the use of cookies on your device as described in our <a href="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/privacy">privacy policy</a> unless you have disabled them. &nbsp;</p> <span><button id="ok"title="Agree to cookies and hide this bar for 90 days">OK</button></span> </div> <script src="http://www.curiouser.co.uk/cookies.js"></script> </body>