Christopher Hitchens is perhaps my favorite writer, and definitely my favorite speaker. I’m currently reading The Quotable Hitchens, by Windsor Man, and I found this fragment of genius yesterday:
You must get control of your speech if you wish to write…It’s ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL AND INDISPENSABLE that you begin the work of forming correct sentences in your head. Try writing things, even short things, and reading them aloud. Try reading them aloud from any work that you admire.
Make a resolution that you will not use obvious or easy words and phrases…If you want to be any good at all as a writer you simply MUST throw aside the crap idioms that pass for speech these days. Purify the well of your English: there is no other way.
I wish I could have another 30 years of Hitchens. That’s my wish. ::