25 Tipps fürs gute Schreiben

Der Guardian hat eine Manifesto for the simple scribe veröffentlicht, das der ehemalige Guardian-Redakteur Tim Radford vor 15 Jahren in Form von 25 Tipps fürs gute Schreiben verfasst hat. Alle 25 Punkte sind lesenswert und erstaunlich aktuell. Meine drei Favoriten:

>> If in doubt, assume the reader knows nothing. However, never make the mistake of assuming that the reader is stupid. The classic error in journalism is to overestimate what the reader knows and underestimate the reader’s intelligence.

>> Don’t even start writing till you have decided what the one big thing is going to be, and then say it to yourself in just one sentence. Then ask yourself whether you could imagine your mother listening to this sentence for longer than a microsecond before she reaches for the ironing. Should you try to sell an editor an idea for an article, you will get about the same level of attention, so pay attention to this sentence. It is often – not always, but often – the first sentence of your article anyway.

>> Read. Read lots of different things. Read the King James Bible, and Dickens, and poems by Shelley, and Marvel Comics and thrillers by Chester Himes and Dashiel Hammet. Look at the astonishing things you can do with words. Note the way they can conjure up whole worlds in the space of half a page.