Sometimes I wonder what way is best. Do I want to write faerie or fairy, theatre or theater, favorite or favourite, good by or goodbye?
In writing in a series– books, pens, paper, and paints–do I want that coma before the and? Do I want punctuation at the ends of lines in poetry, or can I let a line break work for a coma instead? For situations like this I have developed what I call my “Ink Rule.” I ask myself which way uses the least amount of ink. I figure if a printer is using ink to print my words, then I want to do my part to save as much of the ink as I can. I imagine in a long document, I’m saving whole teaspoons of ink which will help to print other words.
Was it Mark Twain who apologized for a long letter and said, If I had more time I could have written a shorter letter? So, shorter is usually better because it uses less ink and saves time and money. This is the Ink Rule I try to apply to my writing.
What are the rules you apply to your writing?