Vonnegut on writing: Simple sentences, direct, and put the important stuff in the beginning

In the Chicago Tribune today

I mean, a lot of critics think I'm stupid because my sentences are so simple and my method is so direct: they think these are defects. No. The point is to write as much as you know as quickly as possible.

In journalism you learn to write a story so someone can cut it without even reading it, putting all the most important stuff in the beginning. And in my books, for the first few pages I say what the hell is going to happen. When I taught at the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop, I told my students, "Look, I want you to write in such a way that should you drop dead, the reader ought to be able to finish the story for you."

Incidentally this is good writing, period, I think.