Here is an amusing and informative rules of writing by New York Times columnist William Safire. Titled, “Fumblerules of Grammar,” wittily self-contradictory list published them in his popular column, “On Language.” Below is first 20 of the initial 36 fumblerules along with other 18 later added in Safire’s book, Fumblerules: A Lighthearted Guide to Grammar and Good Usage.
- Remember to never split an infinitive.
- A preposition is something never to end a sentence with.
- The passive voice should never be used.
- Avoid run-on sentences they are hard to read.
- Don’t use no double negatives.
- Use the semicolon properly, always use it where it is appropriate; and never where it isn’t.
- Reserve the apostrophe for it’s proper use and omit it when its not needed.
- Do not put statements in the negative form.
- Verbs has to agree with their subjects.
- No sentence fragments.
- Proofread carefully to see if you words out.
- Avoid commas, that are not necessary.
- If you reread your work, you can find on rereading a great deal of repetition can be avoided by rereading and editing.
- A writer must not shift your point of view.
- Eschew dialect, irregardless.
- And don’t start a sentence with a conjunction.
- Don’t overuse exclamation marks!!!
- Place pronouns as close as possible, especially in long sentences, as of 10 or more words, to their antecedents.
- Hyphenate between sy-llables and avoid un-necessary hyphens.
- Write all adverbial forms correct.
Read the rest of Safire’s delightful and useful list here.