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Submitted by cummy on January 2, 2022

Most of the “rules” people tell you about writing really boil down to the principle of “say it in as few words as possible.” / Take adverbs: people say reduce them. This isn’t because adverbs are bad, but a more specific verb is more efficient. / He ran quickly down the hall. / He sprinted down the hall. / Even better, combine it with the next sentence. / Sprinting down the hall, he ran into Bob. / There isn’t anything wrong with saying “there was” but it is a waste of words. / There was a fire in the fireplace. / A fire burned in the fireplace. / There are lots of other examples. Active voice, filler words. It all comes down to conciseness. Any time you can rewrite a sentence to use eight words instead of nine, that’s a win. / Now this is a principle, not a rule. Telling uses fewer words than showing, but isn’t better writing. / He was very tall. / He ducked as he entered the room to avoid bumping his head on the doorframe yet again.