Many books on writing tell you how to think more creatively, how to conjure up an idea from scratch. Many, once you have an idea, show you how to express it clearly and elegantly. And many handbooks offer reliable advice on the use of commas, semicolons, and so forth. But The New OxfordGuide to Writing does all three, so that no matter where you find yourself in the writing process--from the daunting look of a blank page, to the rough draft that needs shaping, to the small but important questions of punctuation--you will find what you need in one handy volume.Highlighted by numerous examples of successful prose--including marvelous, brief excerpts from Mark Twain, Joan Didion, H.L. Mencken, E.B. White, and Annie Dillard--this stimulating volume covers the entire subject step-by-step, clearly and authoritatively. It shows:* How to use commonplace books and journals to storeideas, how to brainstorm, how to explore a potentialtopic systematically* How to use a statement of purpose or an outline togive preliminary shape to your material, how to usedrafts and revisions (and more revisions) to refineyour ideas* How to open an essay clearly and interestingly, howto lead the reader subtly, how to use qualificationsto express complexity without sacrificing impact* How to organize ideas into a coherent paragraph, howto vary sentence structure and length for variety andemphasis* How to select words that convey both information andpoint of view* And much, much moreIn addition, it contains a useful appendix on punctuation, ranging from commas and periods to underlining and capitalization.Whether you write for business or for pleasure, whether you are a beginner or an experienced pro, The New Oxford Guide to Writing is an essential addition to your reference library, providing abundant assistance and encouragement to write with more clarity, more color, and more force.