Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by Gustav, Dec 9, 2007.

  1. Gustav Banned Banned

    William Safire's Fumblerules (4 November 1979, New York Times)
    • * 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 any words out.
      * Avoid commas, that are not necessary.
      * If you reread your work, you will find on rereading that 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.
      * Don't use contractions in formal writing.
      * Writing carefully, dangling participles must be avoided.
      * It is incumbent on us to avoid archaisms.
      * If any word is improper at the end of a sentence, a linking verb is.
      * Steer clear of incorrect forms of verbs that have snuck in the language.
      * Take the bull by the hand and avoid mixed metaphors.
      * Avoid trendy locutions that sound flaky.
      * Never, ever use repetitive redundancies.
      * Everyone should be careful to use a singular pronoun with singular nouns in their writing.
      * If I've told you once, I've told you a thousand times, resist hyperbole.
      * Also, avoid awkward or affected alliteration.
      * Don't string too many prepositional phrases together unless you are walking through the valley of the shadow of death.
      * Always pick on the correct idiom.
      * "Avoid overuse of 'quotation "marks."'"
      * The adverb always follows the verb.
      * Last but not least, avoid clichés like the plague; seek viable alternatives.

    George L. Trigg's Grammar (Physics Review Letters, 19 March 1979 (Volume 42, Issue 12, pp. 747-748))

    • 1. Make sure each pronoun agrees with their antecedent.
      2. Just between you and I, the case of pronoun is important.
      3. Watch out for irregular verbs which have crope into English.
      4. Verbs has to agree in number with their subjects.
      5. Don't use no double negatives.
      6. Being bad grammar, a writer should not use dangling modifiers.
      7. Join clauses good like a conjunction should.
      8. A writer must not shift your point of view.
      9. About sentence fragments.
      10. Don't use run-on sentences you got to punctuate them.
      11. In letters essays and reports use commas to separate items in series.
      12. Don't use commas, which are not necessary.
      13. Parenthetical words however should be enclosed in commas.
      14. Its important to use apostrophes right in everybodys writing.
      15. Don't abbrev.
      16. Check to see if you any words out.
      17. In the case of a report, check to see that jargonwise, it's A-OK.
      18. As far as incomplete constructions, they are wrong.
      19. About repetition, the repetition of a word might be real effective repetition - take, for instance the repetition of Abraham Lincoln.
      20. In my opinion, I think that an author when he is writing should definitely not get into the habit of making use of too many unnecessary words that he does not really need in order to put his message across.
      21. Use parallel construction not only to be concise but also clarify.
      22. It behooves us all to avoid archaic expressions.
      23. Mixed metaphors are a pain in the neck and ought to be weeded out.
      24. Consult the dictionery to avoid mispelings.
      25. To ignorantly split an infinitive is a practice to religiously avoid.
      26. Last but not least, lay off clichés.

    New fumblerules
    • * Also, avoid annoying alliteration.
      * Always finish what you start.
      * Always pick on the correct idiom.
      * Always end your sentences with a full stop
      * Analogies in non-fiction are like feathers on a snake.
      * Avoid archaeic spellings.
      * Avoid clichés like the plague; they're old hat.
      * Avoid incorrect terms that have snuck into common usage.
      * capitalise every sentence.
      * Comparisons are as bad as clichés.
      * Contractions aren't necessary and shouldn't be used.
      * Do not use foreign words when there is an adequate English quid pro quo.
      * Do not indulge in sesquipedalian lexicological constructions.
      * Don't repeat yourself or say again that which you have said before.
      * Don't use commas that are not, necessary.
      * Employ the vernacular.
      * Eschew obfuscation.
      * Even if a mixed metaphor sings, it should be derailed.
      * Exaggeration is a billion times worse than an understatement.
      * Go around the barn at high noon to avoid colloquialisms.
      * Hopefully, you will use words correctly, irregardless of how others use them
      * Never use a big word when a diminutive alternative would suffice.
      * One should never generalize.
      * One-word sentences? Exterminate!
      * Parenthetical remarks (however relevant) are unnecessary.
      * Placing a comma between subject and predicate, is not correct.
      * Prepositions should not be used to end a sentence with. It is the sort of bloody nonsense up with which I will not put.
      * Punctuation like capitalisation is very important
      * Spel chek yor werk.
      * The adverb always follows the verb.
      * The passive voice is to be avoided.
      * Try to be specific.
      * Verbs has to agree with their subjects.
      * Who needs rhetorical questions?
      * Writing carefully, dangling participles must be avoided.

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