New Year’s Resolve

Plain words on plain paper.

Remember what Orwell says, that good prose is like a windowpane.

Cut every page you write by at least a third.

Stop constructing those piffling little similes of yours.

Work out what you want to say. Then say it in the most direct and vigorous way you can.

Eat meat. Drink blood.

Give up your social life and don’t think you can have friends.

Rise in the quiet hours of the night and prick your fingertips and use the blood for ink; that will cure you of persiflage!                                      

But do I take my own advice? Not a bit. Persiflage is my nom de guerre. (Don’t use foreign expressions. It’s elitist.)

Hilary Mantel, Giving Up the Ghost

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