There’s more good advice here than in a dozen books on the subject!
Mark Twain’s 18 rules for writing – part of his response to the fiction of James Fenimore Cooper
Mark Twain (1835-1910) is the writer who once observed, ‘The difference between the almost right word and the right word is the difference between the lightning-bug and the lightning.’ (We include that pithy gem in our selection of Mark Twain’s best one-liners, and we’ve offered our favourite Mark Twain facts here.) In his essay, ‘Fenimore Cooper’s Literary Offenses‘ (1895), Twain took the author of The Deerslayer and The Last of the Mohicans to task for his flawed writing style. Scathingly, but hilariously, he writes:
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