Style

 

A good style must, first of all, be clear. It must not be mean or above the dignity of the subject. It must be appropriate.

ARISTOTLE

 

Don’t say you were a bit confused and sort of tired and a little depressed and somewhat annoyed. Be tired. Be confused. Be depressed. Be annoyed. Don’t hedge your prose with little timidities. Good writing is lean and confident.

WILLIAM ZINSSER

 

Carefully examined, a good--an interesting--style will be found to consist in a constant succession of tiny, unobservable surprises.

FORD MADDOX FORD

 

A good style should show no sign of effort. What is written should seem a happy accident.

W. SOMERSET MAUGHAM

 

A strict and succinct style is that, where you can take away nothing with­out loss, and that loss to be manifest.

BEN JONSON

 

The hardest thing about writing, in a sense, is not writing. I mean, the sentence is not intended to show you off, you know. It is not supposed to be “look at me!” “Look, no hands!” It’s supposed to be a pipeline between the reader and you. Once condition of the sentence is to write so well that no one notices that you’re writing.

JAMES BALDWIN

 

The greatest possible mint of style is to make the words absolutely disappear into the thought.

NATHANIEL HAWTHORNE

 

When you say something, make sure you have said it. The chances of your having said it are only fair.

E.B. WHITE

 

I am well aware that an addiction to silk underwear does not necessarily imply that one's feet are dirty. Nonetheless, style, like sheer silk, too often hides eczema.

ALBERT CAMUS

 

It was from Handel that I learned that style consists in force of assertion. If you can say a thing with one stroke, unanswerably you have style; if not, you are at best a marchande de plaisir, a decorative litterateur, or a musical confectioner, or a painter of fans with cupids and coquettes. Handel had power.

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW