Daily Prompt: Careful

As a loyal follower of The Economist Style Guide in my decade-long career as a sub-editor, there are certain things I learned from it — and various style guides from newspapers like The Times of India, Mid Day and The Asian Age and magazines like Femina, Time N Style and Better Interiors — that any editorial person would do well to be careful about, whether you are on the desk or in the reporting team.

5 quick points for sub-editors to be careful about:

  1. Remove redundancy wherever you can. ‘A friend’ is better than ‘a friend of mine’.
  2. Keep sentences short and crisp.
  3. Use active voice wherever possible. Passive voice is to be resorted to only when there is no choice or the active voice doesn’t work in the context.
  4. Avoid cliches. To quote one of my favourite grammar books Strunk & White’s Elements of Style: Avoid clichés like the plague. (They’re old hat.)
  5. Never exaggerate. Understatement is best.

by Kasmin Fernandes

via Daily Prompt: Careful

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