Someone once asked me how to go about achieving a writing style. Like the caterpillar challenged about its coordination in walking, I stumbled as soon as I started thinking about it.
I think the best answer I could offer was that you should try to state the obvious simply, and the style would take care of itself.
In a blog post titled Good Stuff, Lee Goldberg lifts a few sentences from Walter Kirn’s novel Up in the Air (source for the current George Clooney movie) and expresses a fitting admiration for Kirn’s handling of the words.
I genuinely believe that you can flip open a book and read any random sentence and it’ll tell you whether time spent with the author will be wasted. It’s not an absolute guarantee – I can think of many a literary novel where I’ve been seduced by style and let down by structure – but as a working principle, it serves me well.