Editor's note: Roy is working on a writing book about … well, books on writing. On occasion, with permission from the publisher Little, Brown and Company, Poynter.org will publish drafts of key chapters.
“The Elements of Style” is the great-granddaddy and the great-grandmommy of all books on writing.
I say granddaddy and grandmommy not just to avoid the universal masculine, but because it is now the work of two authors, not one: William Strunk Jr. and E.B. White.