Review: The Elements of Style

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The Elements of Style Book Cover
The Elements of Style Non-Fiction ESBooks Kindle 97 pages Amazon

‘The Elements of Style’ (1918), by William Strunk, Jr., is an American English writing style guide. It is the best-known, most influential prescriptive treatment of English grammar and usage, and often is required reading and usage in U.S. high school and university composition classes.

This fourth edition (originally published in 1999 in hardback) of ‘The Elements of Style’ details eight elementary rules of usage, ten elementary principles of composition, “a few matters of form”, and a list of commonly misused words and expressions.


One of those ‘essential reading’ books for writers. It lays out many of the rookie mistakes you should avoid if you want to be taken seriously. We all make them – I still do. Erudite and necessary reading and to have for reference right next to you. I came across this when reading On Writing, and have seen it referred to many times in many online forums. It is dry but makes perfect sense if you want to write good fiction and not just words on a page.

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By Edward

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    Many (many) years ago, I discovered role-playing and Dungeons and Dragons in one of the after school clubs. It revealed a universe that allowed me to flex my storytelling muscles and enjoy a mixture of fantasy and sci-fi and feed the escapist dreamer inside.

    Over time, I played (and story-led - marked with *) many systems including Call of Cthulhu*, Shadowrun, Dungeons & Dragons*, Middle Earth, In Nomine*, Bushido, Chivalry & Sorcery, Chill, Warhammer, Warhammer 40k, Gammaworld, Hawkmoon, Stormbringer, Immortals*, Marvel Super Heroes, Paranoia, RuneQuest, Vampire: The Masquerade*, and a couple of systems my own devising (Medieval* and Parody*).

    I explored live-action role-playing – eventually running my own club and developing my own LARP systems (Fools Gold and Dream Conquest) – and usually found myself in script-writing or game-master duty, writing over 500 individual live adventures over the period (usually weekly), many linked into the world events of the fantasy land we created. I also volunteered for Curious Pastimes and Lorien Trust at their main LARP events (special effects at the Ritual Circle), and did a little script work, cameos and improv for Curious Pastimes. I was also the South East's Editor (UK) for the LARP magazine The Adventurer.

    I was also the artistic director for English Heritage for their live Halloween Horrors events at Fort Amherst in Kent from 1998-1999.

    The rest, as they say, is history.