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Questions tagged [formatting]

Questions about text appearance: styling, placement, fonts, indents, bullets.

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Multiple-paragraph block quotation

I'm currently working on editing an academic paper in APA-7 format for a friend. This paper has a multiple-paragraph block-quote in it (specifically, the entire text of the short manifesto "The ...
In Hoc Signo's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
40 views

How would you format dialogue that is in the middle of a sentence?

Below I will provide an example sentence in various forms to demonstrate what I mean. I want to see which punctuation is correct or most widely accepted. My assumption is an example will be correct ...
LED Fish Walker's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
436 views

How should I format a surprise scene change such that it reads coherently but is still a surprise?

In the current WIP chapter of my most popular web serial, there is a scene at the beginning that is presented as happening "now" (that is, having regular story focus) only to be suddenly ...
Ayula OneOne's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
36 views

When writting someone’s credentials in a text, is it capitalized?

I wrote "French egyptologist Jean Yoyotte suggested that, as Memphis already had a presence of Greek speakers, Herodotus could have used them to speak to the priesthood." Should I instead ...
Vincent Desrosiers's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
17 views

In a bibliography hanging indentation, what is the appropriate indentation amount?

According to the Chicago Manual of Style, a bibliography entry should be set in a hanging indentation (where the first line is set flush left, and subsequent lines are "indented"). My ...
ltcomdata's user avatar
  • 101
0 votes
1 answer
20 views

Formatting poetry collection and formatting standards

What does the industry use? I thought about just copy pasting the lyrics into a file format and then appending them in one file, but I am wondering if most publisher use some kind of software to put ...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
3 votes
5 answers
528 views

Is there another, more formal, word for 'ride' in this circumstance?

Imagine a man standing by the highway, asking for a ride. Not a free ride like in hitchhiking, but a paid one. Is there another term for 'ride' that would better suit the situation here? Setting is a ...
EMS's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
81 views

I am using Utopia but I don't like the italic. Which free fonts have an italic version that goes well with utopia?

I am using Utopia (11 pt) for a non fiction book and I like it. But I don't like the italic, the quotes are not very readable. I tried many fonts in LibreOffice, but I didn't find a good match yet. I ...
FluidCode's user avatar
  • 113
1 vote
1 answer
34 views

How to format a section heading in a manuscript

I am preparing a short story for submission. As it is not a novel, there aren't chapters per se. But there are definitely distinct sections. Some of them might have titles, and/or associated quotes....
trubliphone's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
31 views

Should hyphens be used at the beginning of a line in compound nouns?

Is there a rule about using two hyphens at the end of the line and at the beginning of the next? How to hyphen compound word like Bat-Signal? Is it: Bat- / -Signal or Bat- / Signal
cri's user avatar
  • 1
0 votes
2 answers
63 views

Italicization of foreign common names of organisms in English texts?

I wonder when I write a formal text whether I should italicize the use of common names (not scientific names) in foreign languages. Example: The leaves of the supinosasumomo (スピノサスモモ) are on leaf ...
Tyrus Rechs's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
217 views

Can my narrator's thoughts be in the same paragraph as another character's dialogue?

I'm writing a scene where my narrator (character A) is listening and reacting internally to character B, who is giving a long-winded explanation of something. Though is is a problem I run into ...
Meg's user avatar
  • 23
1 vote
1 answer
82 views

How do I use an image as an epigraph?

There is a "picture that paints a thousand words" that I would like to use in the frontmatter of a book, similar to an epigraph. What is the proper way to lay out the page? Should it have a ...
nich's user avatar
  • 13
1 vote
2 answers
52 views

How to deal with footnotes in cited sections?

When citing a section from another work, and that cited section has a footnote, how would you go about including the footnote in your citation? Should I turn the footnote of the cited section into a ...
Nemo Nobody's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
113 views

Should I write the 'after'?

Alright, so I just finished a really beautiful scene in my manuscript that happened during an event. Let's say it was a party. So the beautiful scene happened rather in the beginning of the event, ...
L'Yana James's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
108 views

Why is Scrivener using the "First pages" setting for the entire manuscript?

I have a 'project format' template I've been using for a long time that shows a different header for the Front Matter, then starts the manuscript at Chapter 1 with the project title/page 1 etc in the ...
valoukh's user avatar
  • 181
2 votes
3 answers
89 views

Format for writing extended dialogue

Is it acceptable to write dialogue in a book in screenplay format? (writing the name of the speaker and a colon, followed by the text)
Eni's user avatar
  • 53
-1 votes
3 answers
60 views

Spacing around (and types of) dashes in American English

I'm not a native English speaker, and the way American English texts typically use em-dashes without spaces to separate sentence parts seems very strange and even disruptive for me. For example: &...
gaspar's user avatar
  • 99
0 votes
1 answer
145 views

Can scenes taking place right after each other in the same place have separate headers?

I'm writing a screenplay and in it there are two different scenes that take place in the same place and with one immediately after the other both chronologically and in the script. I want to separate ...
SlowlySwift's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
52 views

Am I overdoing it with the em dashes here?

I wrote two versions of the last paragraph for my scene (I included additional context since it also has an em dash). I need help deciding if the second version has too many em dashes and if I should ...
pink's user avatar
  • 1
5 votes
2 answers
161 views

How should I include the sentence that a character would've said if they weren't interrupted in a screenplay?

I'm writing a screenplay with a scene were characters interrupt each other frequently. I think including the lines a character would've said if they weren't interrupted could help the actors and ...
SlowlySwift's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
80 views

How do you handle "mid-word pauses" during dialogues in novels?

How do you handle "mid-word pauses" during dialogues in novels? I rarely see it being done in novels, so I am not sure what are the various ways to format it. Could you tell me the most ...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
1 vote
1 answer
89 views

Hidden image in a regular text block

Is there a technique or any example of embedding some shape into an otherwise normal block of prose text, e.g. page in a book? This would probably be a type of Calligram. It could look like something ...
mcpiroman's user avatar
  • 123
1 vote
2 answers
95 views

How to write a scene where a projector shows clips

I'm trying to figure out the best way to show a projector showing clips like key events over a lifetime. I'm thinking a montage with some dialogue, but I'm not certain that's the correct way.
user59797's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
37 views

Is there a standard style for writing chapter notes in a non-fiction book manuscript?

I am trying to find a standard style for writing chapter notes in a non-academic non-fiction book as per the image below. Is there an online resource where I can find an appropriate style guide for ...
user112705's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
727 views

How do you write a scientific genus name in an already italicized text?

I am currently working on finishing up a thesis about my research in the field of biochemistry. The text that I am using to describe the figures is italicized. My question is: when I am trying to ...
Audrey's user avatar
  • 51
5 votes
4 answers
928 views

Can dialogue be put in the same paragraph as action text?

I'm a beginner writer, trying to learn fundementals. I'm editing some work now and I'm confused about proper formatting of paragraphs with dialogue. I know that you should start a new paragraph when ...
LPCOLLINS's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
198 views

How to format classical music titles?

I’ve scoured the internet for help, but my search bore no fruit and left me very frustrated. I’m currently proof reading a novel I plan to publish soon and I’ve run into a little snag. So my character ...
Miss Tacitus's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
60 views

How do you use a heavily poetic style while also using a formatting that's similar to that of modern novel?

How do you use a heavily poetic style while also using a formatting that's similar to that of modern novel? Is there a way to add a poetic spin to the modern formatting seen in novels that was ...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
2 votes
1 answer
115 views

Multiple Character Dialogue & Action Formatting

I’m editing a first person story and I’m a bit stumped on one thing in particular. I’m not sure how to explain this in a non-confusing way. Is it okay or correct to mix the dialogue and actions of one ...
wittywrites's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
31 views

Can the APA references section be broken down into subsections?

I'm writing an article and it's time for references. The problem is it needs to be APA style in alphabetical order. There are so many references, I'd like to put them in sections. Is that acceptable ...
Rare Filmlover's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
810 views

How do you format a poem inside of a novel?

How do you format a poem inside of a novel? I am not sure how to go about it. What are some popular ways of introducing a poem inside a novel. Let's say that the character reads a poem from a small ...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
-3 votes
1 answer
260 views

Best operating system for the serious writer? [closed]

Windows, Android, macOS or else?
user57108's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
90 views

Should I use "***" 3 asterisks or extra blank lines or whatever to indicate the breaks between parallel plot scenes, in a Kindle Vella fiction story?

That is, for example, suppose I have two plots going on, and I've sandwiched (ie. interleaved) them; a few paragraphs of one plot scene alternating with a few paragraphs of a 2nd plot scene. To ...
Doug Null's user avatar
  • 201
1 vote
2 answers
132 views

What lies between a Part and a Chapter?

This is for fiction literature. I've got this story where the original chapters became so huge that I had to split them into 5 chapters each. But each original chapter is relatively distinct and ...
DrZ214's user avatar
  • 210
0 votes
3 answers
165 views

Is there a style convention for how to "format" a book title in plain text (no formatting)?

Typically book titles are ideally italicized or otherwise underlined. For example: In his book Some Book Title, John Doe describes... Is there any style convention for what to do if you are limited ...
Matt's user avatar
  • 101
2 votes
1 answer
817 views

Are book and movie titles italicized when mentioned in dialogue?

Just to be clear: I understand the rules on punctuating all manner of titles in writing. I want to know do these rules apply when used in dialogue.
athornburgh's user avatar
6 votes
8 answers
2k views

Are there examples of using text formatting (e.g. color) to disambiguate different instances of the same word in a text?

I've had an idea recently to use color in order to disambiguate several usages of the same word in a text which refer to two different instances of the same concept. Since StackExchange does not allow ...
AndrewShulaev's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
1k views

Is there a word for when a text is between chapters that enriches the story but is not part of the previous or following chapter?

Is there a word for when a text is between chapters that enriches the story but are not part of the previous or following chapter? I'm writing fiction and wanted to have in-universe news articles from ...
Tromb's user avatar
  • 21
0 votes
2 answers
159 views

Lower case or upper case letters at the beginning of rows and columns in tables?

On a recent review of an academic paper, a reviewer has pointed out that we sometimes use lower case letter at the start of expressions, and that we should check our tables in particular. True enough, ...
Sursula's user avatar
  • 109
1 vote
1 answer
104 views

In a collection of stories with multiple worlds, how do you cue your readers as to what world your story takes place?

In a collection of stories with multiple worlds, how do you cue your readers as to what world your story takes place? Let's say I have a collection of short stories, there are 1,000 science fiction ...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
3 votes
2 answers
187 views

Use nonbreaking space when cross-referencing and citing?

I am writing a scientific report. In general, should I use non-breaking spaces in my cross-references and citations? Here are some examples where I use tilde where a nonbreaking space might be used. ...
user2153235's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
79 views

Is there a term describing two poems that start simultaneously or in succession?

I am studying a poem called Unbearable Weight of Staying by Warsan Shire. It includes regular type and then indented, italicised type e.g I don't know when love became elusive. My mother's laughter ...
SlummingWords4's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
65 views

Can I reference italics in academic writing?

I am analysing a poetry collection for college and one poem is 'Unbearable Weight of Staying' by Warsan Shire. She includes both regular and italicised type in the text, e.g: I don't know when love ...
SlummingWords4's user avatar
0 votes
3 answers
180 views

How to use parentheses with parenthesis inside

For example, The model shows a great divergence at zero momentum (see Fig. 5(c)) I am not sure if the last two "))" appear cluttered. I have seen suggestions of using [] on the outside but ...
wooohooo's user avatar
  • 111
4 votes
1 answer
211 views

How could I format a character that thinks with two voices in her head?

I'm in close third PoV. My character has a specific way of thinking: two voices in her head discuss all the time. In my paragraphs, I then have three "voices": The usual, close Narrator ...
Adrien Nivaggioli's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
142 views

How do you perfectly describe a documentary or similar videos in a novel?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LEENEFaVUzU Let's say the protagonist watches a video from a channel like "Kurzgesagt – In a Nutshell", how would you go about describing exactly what the ...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
2 votes
2 answers
83 views

What is the format for referring to un-named characters?

I have read some scripts recently which features a scene that refers to a group of background characters without naming them, but to distinguish between them uses "descriptive names" instead....
FrontEnd's user avatar
  • 235
1 vote
1 answer
251 views

Mixing indirect and direct speech in fiction

I often find myself wanting to include bits of dialogue in narratives where I am summarizing a detailed conversation. For example, I am inclined to write silly things like this: Bill and Ted talked ...
EDL's user avatar
  • 12.4k
6 votes
5 answers
1k views

Format when repeating one word from another character's dialogue

I'm trying to find the formatting convention for quoting another character's dialogue when repeating just one word. An example would be: 'You were the only person I could think of,' said Mike. 'The ...
Ambie's user avatar
  • 163

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