Table of Contents for How to Not Write Bad : The Most Common Writing Problems and the Best Ways to Avoid Them


Introduction 1(14)
Part I How to Not Write Bad: The One-Word Version
15(10)
Part II How to Not Write Wrong
25(78)
A The Elements of House Style
25(1)
1 Numbers and Abbreviations
26(1)
2 Capitalization
27(2)
3 Italics
29(1)
4 There Is No Reason Ever to Use Boldface in a Piece of Writing, Except for a Section Heading (Like This)
30(1)
B Punctuation
30(1)
1 '
30(5)
2 -
35(4)
3 ---
39(1)
4 ,
40(12)
5 ;
52(2)
6 :
54(1)
7 " "
54(2)
8 ()
56(3)
C Words
59(1)
1 The Single Most Common Mistake Is the Most Easily Fixable Mistake
59(1)
2 Spelling
59(16)
3 Wrong Word
75(4)
D Grammar
78(1)
1 Sanitized
79(3)
2 Skunked
82(6)
3 Still Wrong
88(15)
Part III How to Not Write Bad
103(70)
A Punctuation
105(1)
1 Quotation Marks
105(1)
2 Exclamation Points, Dashes, Semicolons, Colons, Parentheses, Italics, and Rhetorical Questions...
106(2)
B Words and Phrases
108(1)
1 Really Quick Fix: Avoid These Words!
108(8)
2 Short Is Good (I)
116(3)
3 Precision: Words That Are a Bit Off
119(5)
4 Avoid Cliches Like the Plague
124(7)
5 Euphemisms, Buzzwords, and Jargon
131(4)
C Sentences
135(1)
1 Word Rep
135(4)
2 Start Strong
139(2)
3 End Strong
141(4)
4 Short Is Good (II)
145(4)
5 The Perils of Ambiguity
149(5)
6 What Is the What? Or, the Trouble with Vague Pronouns
154(5)
7 When You Catch a Preposition, Kill It
159(2)
8 To Use to Be or Not to Use to Be
161(4)
9 What the Meaning of "Is Is" Is
165(3)
10 Tone
168(5)
D Sentence to Sentence, Paragraph to Paragraph
169(4)
Author's Note 173