Mark Twain on Writing

I like the exact word, and clarity of statement, and here and there a touch of good grammar for picturesqueness.

                     — The Autobiography of Mark Twain, 1924

As to the Adjective: when in doubt, strike it out.

                     — Pudd’nhead Wilson, 1894

The time to begin writing an article is when you have finished it to your satisfaction. By that time you begin to clearly and logically perceive what it is that you really want to say.

                     — Mark Twain’s Notebook, 1902-1903

The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter — it’s the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.

                     — From Mark Twain’s Letter to George Bainton, 10/15/1888

Writing is easy. All you have to do is cross out the wrong words.

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