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Economical writing : thirty-five rules for clear and persuasive prose

Author: Deirdre N McCloskey; Stephen Thomas Ziliak
Publisher: Chicago : The University of Chicago Press, 2019.
Series: Chicago guides to writing, editing, and publishing.
Edition/Format:   Print book : English : Third editionView all editions and formats
Summary:
Economics is not a field that is known for good writing. Charts, yes. Sparkling prose, no. Except, that is, when it comes to Deirdre Nansen McCloskey. Her conversational and witty yet always clear style is a hallmark of her classic works of economic history, enlivening the dismal science and engaging readers well beyond the discipline. And now she’s here to share the secrets of how it’s done. Economical Writing is  Read more...
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Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Deirdre N McCloskey; Stephen Thomas Ziliak
ISBN: 9780226448077 022644807X
OCLC Number: 1061867651
Description: ix, 153 pages ; 22 cm.
Contents: Why you should not stop reading here --
Writing is a trade --
Writing is thinking --
Rules can help, but bad rules hurt --
Be thou clear, but seek joy, too --
The rules are factual rather than logical --
Classical rhetoric guides even the economical writer --
Fluency can be achieved by grit --
Write early rather than late --
You will need tools --
Keep your spirits up, forge ahead --
Speak to an audience of human beings --
Avoid boilerplate --
Control your tone --
A paragraph should have apoint --
Make tables, graphs, displayed equations, and labels on images readable by themselves --
Footnotes and other "scholarly" tics are pedantic --
Make your writing cohere --
Use your ear --
Write in complete sentences --
Avoid elegant variation --
Watch how each word connects with others --
Watch punctuation --
The order around switch until it good sounds --
Read, out loud --
Use verbs, active ones --
Avoid words that bad writers love --
Be concrete --
Be plain --
Avoid cheap typographical tricks --
Avoid this, that, these, those --
Above all, look at your words --
Use standard forms in letters --
Treat speaking in public as a performance --
Advice for nonnative English speakers --
If you didn't stop reading, join the flow --
"Scholars talk writing: Dierdre McCloskey" --
House rules: Teaching materials.
Series Title: Chicago guides to writing, editing, and publishing.
Responsibility: Deirdre Nansen McCloskey ; with an appendix by Stephen T. Ziliak.

Abstract:

Economics is not a field that is known for good writing. Charts, yes. Sparkling prose, no. Except, that is, when it comes to Deirdre Nansen McCloskey. Her conversational and witty yet always clear style is a hallmark of her classic works of economic history, enlivening the dismal science and engaging readers well beyond the discipline. And now she’s here to share the secrets of how it’s done. Economical Writing is itself economical: a collection of thirty-five pithy rules for making your writing clear, concise, and effective. Proceeding from big-picture ideas to concrete strategies for improvement at the level of the paragraph, sentence, or word, McCloskey shows us that good writing, after all, is not just a matter of taste—it’s a product of adept intuition and a rigorous revision process. Debunking stale rules, warning us that “footnotes are nests for pedants,” and offering an arsenal of readily applicable tools and methods, she shows writers of all levels of experience how to rethink the way they approach their work, and gives them the knowledge to turn mediocre prose into magic. At once efficient and digestible, hilarious and provocative, Economical Writing lives up to its promise. With McCloskey as our guide, it’s impossible not to see how any piece of writing—on economics or any other subject—can be a pleasure to read.

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"McCloskey has written the best short guide to academic prose in the language. Is this language English and not the Academic Official Style? Does McCloskey write with a sense that is also a sense of Read more...

 
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