I have a somewhat self-destructive fondness for Strunk and White. I don't love all the advice, but goddamn if he doesn't say what he means. Plus studentry is fucking gold.Automatic writing style advice is terrible. It's good to be aware of the effect passive or active voice has on what you are saying. It's dumb to say you should never use passive voice.
And yeah, I'm looking at you Strunk and White.
I do like The Elements of Style. I always has a copy on me back when I was copy editor for school paper. I just think it's a useful for book of advice, not a mandatory style guide. I do think reading it made me a better writer.I have a somewhat self-destructive fondness for Strunk and White. I don't love all the advice, but goddamn if he doesn't say what he means. Plus studentry is fucking gold.
That's about right, I think, at least as a starting point. Some suggestions are good, but their grammar knowledge (and advice based on it) is atrocious:I just think it's a useful for book of advice, not a mandatory style guide.
As I read Pullum, he criticizes S&W for basing their style advice on grammatical concepts that they don't understand (and thus give bad style advice). I think you picked up on his (secondary) lamentation that in the course of their style advice they also mislabel a lot of grammatical structures, so that people who take S&W's word for it learn them wrong.Pullum misses the point a bit. S&W is a style guide, not a book of grammar rules.
My parents left for a cocktail party leaving the 4 of us kids alone figuring the oldest boys could babysit. They entered the door and were told. Go home the youngest broke his arm. They got home to my older two brothers having had great fun using their boyscout skills to set my broken arm while the next door lady looked on hyperventilating. One of the brothers setting it was also the one who broke it.