Duffin's Writing Allergies
 
Things to which I am more or less "allergic":
 
long paragraphs
long sentences
"so" to mean "therefore"
"for" to mean "because"
"However" to begin a sentence
"But although" to begin a sentence or join two sentences
"And although" to begin a sentence
"So although" to begin a sentence
"Yet while" to begin a sentence
"It is xxx that" to begin a sentence (or "it" without antecedent as subject)
"There is/are/was/were" to begin or "there" as subject of a sentence
"therefore," "thus"
"This" as a noun, especially as a subject of a sentence
"Although" to begin a paragraph
use of subordinate clauses following "It is .." or "There is "to avoid passive. (unlike the rest of the world, medicine is comfortable with passives--it can be economic)
"to try and [verb]" (prefer--and only if necessary--"to try to..")
"The" used to begin several sentences in a row
unnecessary articles (i.e. overuse of "the"; medicine prefers the partitive. I accepted the all additions of "the" to my journalistic use of "as [the] historian Tom Brown said..." but not for many conceptual or science words)
"for instance"
"many/some/several of xxxxx/them/it..."
"which" without a comma preceding it
"shall"
"in fact"
repetition of words
repeated use of gerunds "-ing"
repeated use of past continuous "author(s) has/have shown" for events that are over
prepositions dangling at the end of sentences
"and" joining two sentences with when a semi-colon will do.
M-dash for introduction of evidence when a colon will do.
 
Also I dislike and use as little as possible the following words: "which," "actually" "such" "should" "must" "ought" "nowadays" "afterwards" "towards" "meanwhile" "in the meantime" "likewise" "certainly" "of course" "largely" "no doubt" "always" "never"
(in medicine there's an expression: never say "never," never say "always")
 and ... parenthetical remarks, especially in middle of sentences, as above.

Scandalous Bibliography -- Mock Up for UTP
 

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