Noble's Book of Writing Blunders (And How To Avoid Them)

Stay away from prose that is static, dusty, or too formal! Learn to energize your writing and make your words come alive! Author William Noble shows you that some of the worst mistakes come from sticking too closely to the rules. By learning which rules are okay to ignore, you will be able to remedy your errors and create the kind of writing that makes fiction and nonfiction stories crackle with life.

Inside, Noble identifies the blunders most common to every writer, beginning or advanced and demonstrates how to correct your mistake and avoid it in the future. By avoiding these common pitfalls, you can begin to improve your writing today!

  • Don't Write For Your Eighth-Grade Teacher
  • Don't Complicate the Obvious
  • Don't Use Journalese or Slangify Words and Phrases
  • Don't Wallow in a Sentence Straightjacket
  • Don't Add Adverbs and Adjectives to Prettify Your Prose
  • Don't Passify Your Verb Voice
  • Don't Repeat Without Relevance
  • Don't Wrap Characters in the Same Grammar Blanket
  • Don't Be Afraid to Make Your Own Rules

Reviews from Goodreads.com

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By Austin (Vancouver, BC, Canada) · ★★★★☆ · January 16, 2011
"Writing Blunders - and how to avoid them" by William Noble is a collection of 29 essays on the most common writing mistakes.

It's one of the better writing books I've read. Each essay is short (around 6 pages). This is helpful because the writer makes his point, gives examples, and explains how t... ...more
By Jacqui (Laguna Hills, CA) · ★★★☆☆ · November 13, 2010
I bought this when I'd finished the other books I purchased on how to self-edit (Self-editing for Fiction Writers, How to Write the D*** Good Novel). It's summary had good ideas, things like Don't write for your eighty-grade teacher, Don't complicate the obvious, Don't add adverbs and adjectives... ...more
By Stacy (The United States) · ★★★★☆ · November 26, 2013
Each of the 29 blunders was covered in a chapter of 4-7 pages, which was long enough to address the issue and not too long as to make me close the book and not pick it back up. These blunders were basic, but the way he wrote about each one took it one step further. He didn’t only address point of... ...more
By Aubrey (Neenah, WI) · ★★★★☆ · February 13, 2013
An old review salvaged from my blog archives:

Though the title makes it sound like a simple rule book, Noble's Book of Writing Blunders primarily deals with the issue of style, of cultivating a writer's personal voice. The book encourages a liberal approach to traditional writing "rules" without d... ...more
By Mangy (Colorado Springs, CO) · October 24, 2008
I had to shelve this one because there are a lot of things in it that either 1. I know already; or 2. I don't agree with. :oP There are much better writing resources out there.

Noble's Book of Writing Blunders seems like Writers Digest's attempt at producing their version of "The 38 Most Common F... ...more