Economical Writing:  by Deirdre N. McCloskey
98 pages, $14.95 list
1-57766-063-3
978-1-57766-063-7
Economical Writing
Second Edition
A valuable short guide for mastering the craft of academic writing! Students and young professionals who care about direct, clear expression should read this lucid, delightful gem by an author who practices what she advises. McCloskey’s systematic treatment provides a range of insights and practical advice for better writing by scholars in every field.
Reviews
“Certainly this is a book that must be recommended for our college students. Writing seems to be a big challenge for many of our students.” — Benjamin Onyango, Missouri State University

“Writing seems to be a consistent problem with our students. This is a way to address it without adding much additional expense to their book costs.” — Anthony Stair, Frostburg State University

“Deirdre McCloskey’s Economical Writing, originally aimed to help economists write better, is in this second edition clearly a book that should be read by scholars in every field. Her thirty-one rules, offered with wit and delightful brevity, include the essential warning that though rules can help, bad rules hurt. McCloskey’s are all of the helpful kind.” —Wayne Booth, late of University of Chicago

“Professor McCloskey has written the best short guide to academic prose in the language. Is this language English and not the Academic Official Style? Does McCloskey write with a sense that is also a sense of humor? All true. Buy and believe.” —Richard Lanham, University of California, Los Angeles

“If you want to be read (and who doesn't) and be remembered (better yet), Economical Writing is for you. This entertaining volume will teach you how to write meaningful and joyful economics. A dose of McCloskey banishes the dismal from the ‘dismal science.’ McCloskey is the Strunk and White of economics, and Economical Writing should be required reading for all economists.” —Claudia Goldin, Harvard University

“McCloskey tells economists to say what they have to say clearly and economically, and then shows them how. Students can learn to write so that the professor will know what they mean and, more important, professors can learn to write so that the rest of the world will know what they mean.” —Howard S. Becker, University of Washington

“Deirdre McCloskey's lively and conversational style is sure to engage students and professional scholars alike. Economical Writing should be required reading for students at the dissertation stage. Professionals should read and reread it to keep the bad habits from creeping back into their writing.” —William Polley, Western Illinois University
Table of Contents
Why You Should Not Stop Reading Here
1. Writing Is the Economist’s Trade
2. Writing Is Thinking
3. Rules Can Help, But Bad Rules Hurt
4. Be Thou Clear; But for Lord’s Sake Have Fun, Too
5. The Rules Are Factual Rather Than Logical
6. Classical Rhetoric Guides Even the Economical Writer
7. Fluency Can Be Achieved by Grit
8. Write Early Rather Than Late
9. You Will Need Tools
10. Keep Your Spirits Up, Forge Ahead
11. Speak to an Audience of Human Beings
12. Avoid Boilerplate
13. Control Your Tone
14. Paragraphs Should Have Points
15. Make Tables, Graphs, and Displayed Equations Readable
16. Footnotes Are Nests for Pedants
17. Make Your Writing Cohere
18. Use Your Ear
19. Write in Complete Sentences
20. Avoid Elegant Variation
21. Watch How Each Word Connects with Others
22. Watch Punctuation
23. The Order Around Switch Until It Good Sounds
24. Read, Out Loud
25. Use Verbs, Active Ones
26. Avoid Words That Bad Writers Love
27. Be Concrete
28. Be Plain
29. Avoid Cheap Typographical Tricks
30. Avoid This, That, These, Those
31. Above All, Look at Your Words
If You Didn’t Stop Reading, Join the Flow