Questions tagged [formatting]

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

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1answer
27 views

Formatting a story collection for submission to publishers

Anyone know of a definitive online resource on formatting a story collection for submission to publishers and agents? One knotty question in particular: does one use the title of the book throughout ...
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2answers
68 views

Page numbering. Empty pages for notes include in page numbering?

I have a few questions about the page numbering of the last few pages of my book. I have a section with further resources. It contains one page with information about a site and three more pages with ...
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1answer
49 views

Short Story versus Novel format [closed]

I have just completed a draft erotic short story I have never professionally published fiction before but I believe this story "sizzles". This story is around 4000 words. I have rough ...
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4answers
91 views

How exactly does a book go from typewritten pages into an actual mass-produced unit ready for the consumer, and do authors have any control?

I want to be clear that I'm asking about this both for the present time, where nearly everyone does everything digitally, and for "back in the day", such as the 1970s or 1950s or 1920s or ...
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0answers
18 views

How to properly include credits for the author, location, date and time?

I'm working on an amateur article about various topics and want to include my name (as the author), location of where I'm currently writing the article, and the current date and time. I've seen many ...
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0answers
95 views

What is this writing style called, and why was it invented?

I'm re-reading "The Fellowship of the Ring" in Swedish, a pocket printed in 1971. Although I believe that the original English book uses "quotes", this version is instead rewritten ...
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1answer
57 views

Is it ok to underline or italicize the topic sentences of each paragraph of an essay?

I'm writing a casual essay which is intended for one of my friends. I wrote it so that it's quite easy to grasp the gist even if you read only the topic sentences of each paragraph. Would emphasizing ...
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0answers
16 views

Birth-death dates in exhibit catalog

I'm editing an art exhibit catalog. The paintings featured are primarily portraits, most often titled simply with the subject's name. What is the best practice for including birth-death dates of the ...
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1answer
46 views

Quoting italicized text: keep formatting?

I'm quoting a sentence from Carl von Clausewitz' On War. He has part of the sentence italicized though: Obstinacy is a fault of temperament. Is it necessary to maintain his formatting? Ideally, I ...
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2answers
85 views

How do you write a large number in a sentence?

I was there for 45,400,000 (forty-five million, four hundred thousand) seconds I was there for 45,400,000, forty-five million, four hundred thousand, seconds?
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2answers
85 views

Referring to groups and unnamed individuals from groups in a screenplay

The following extract is from a screenplay I'm writing. I could really use some advice on how to format it, particularly around referring to groups of people and an unnamed person from a group. Bob ...
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2answers
10k views

Listing names with titles

Normally when listing a group of people you would simply separate each with a comma. Please send the memo to Jason, Sarah, and Courtney. However if you want to include the title of each person ...
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1answer
86 views

What are these parallel blocks of text called?

What are these boxes of text called that interrupt the flow of text with some aside type comment? source They're usually related to the main body of text, are embedded somewhere nearby in their ...
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4answers
52 views

Hyphen for “multiple-response”?

I'm writing a help document for a website that tests people. In much of the copy for the website, I've referred to "multiple-choice" questions with the hyphen. Now, I have to write about multiple ...
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1answer
33 views

How do I cite and translate poetry in MLA format?

I hope to translate poems from other languages to English, but I don't know how I am supposed to cite the original author and include myself as the translator in MLA format. I will translate from ...
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5answers
18k views

In a screenplay, how do you show people talking over each other?

When writing a script where you have two (or more) people talking at the same time, how is that formatted? Side-by-side columns? Some other vertical grouping? Notes? Does it vary? Examples would be ...
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0answers
20 views

How to start writing an autobiography [duplicate]

I’m planning to write my autobiography. I don’t know where to start. Please give some tips and tricks to kickstart the project. I know it’s my personal stuff. But still some hacks from experienced ...
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1answer
51 views

How Would I Go About Sharing a Word Document to a Literary Agent?

I was wondering, how would I go about sharing a Word document to a literary agent? I currently have all my professionally proofread novels formatted. They are formatted as the following: 1 inch ...
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2answers
63 views

Screenplay dialogue tags for unintroduced characters

I am writing a screenplay for a TV show in which a character who will become important later in the series has a line of dialogue in the opening scene. However, he is offscreen and will not be ...
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1answer
81 views

How to present a 1st-person Narrator with a 3rd-person account of the same incident

I am writing a Historic Fiction novel. The story is being narrated by someone. The entire story is from the Point of View of the Narrator, based on information she knows. What is the best way to ...
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2answers
155 views

How to ask a question and define what I mean?

I am in the middle of the painful process of buying a car. I am trying to do much of my legwork online before going into a dealership. One of the things I hate the most about purchasing a car is ...
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6answers
12k views

Is it OK to use a single parenthesis after each number in a list?

Several times I've seen lists formatted like this: My parenthetical pet peeves: 1) Referring to a single parenthesis as "a parenthesee" or something similarly beastly. 2) Smiley faces ...
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0answers
30 views

Is there a way to make MS Word or LO Writer to automatically indent paragraphs in a section except for the first paragraph?

I would like to make a style in MS Word or LO Writer that will leave the first paragraph of a section or chapter (i.e. anything that follows a heading) unindended, but indent all the paragraphs that ...
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0answers
46 views

Title within a title: How to format properly using Chicago style

Would this be an appropriate way to format the title of my essay, or should it be different? I am using the Chicago style. I am using two book titles within my own title. Would this be the proper way ...
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10answers
41k views

What's the best way to show a foreign language in a manuscript?

What's the best way to show a character speaking a foreign language in a fiction manuscript? Should the foreign words be italicized and include a translation? Should it just be included in the ...
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4answers
64k views

Is there a standard for dealing with lyrics in dialogue and narration in creative writing?

I'm peer-reviewing/editing a paper for a final in my English course and in it, the author has a character singing a song (of the author's creation). The character is singing in dialogue, like so: &...
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2answers
12k views

What's the exact format of letters/text messages inside novels?

The following is from The Fault in Our Stars: If I'm not mistaken, this is the formatting: The font should be half the size of the normal font. They should be indented with twice the indent space. ...
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11answers
7k views

Do 'text walls' scare off readers?

A comment on a recent question of mine claims Right, so that's [large unformatted text blocks scaring off some readers in certain contexts is] a myth. This is how I know: Harry Potter. Big long ...
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0answers
15 views

Bibliography format with multiple citations from same book? (APA)

I'm writing a paper where I've included multiple citations from a book, each citation is not a direct quote from the text but rather a in-text citation so according to APA guidelines these citations ...
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1answer
55 views

Pictures in my book

I have recently been diagnosed with ALS. I was keeping a journal on the CaringBridge site, and I got enough feedback about it that I have decided to turn it into a book. I have added memories of my ...
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7answers
2k views

When should a chapter end?

When writing a novel, when should I end a chapter? Note that I'm not talking about chapter word-count (that topic was discussed here). I'm interested to know when should I end my chapters ...
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1answer
94 views

How to format my book before sending it to a publisher?

I am looking to send a copy of a horror anthology that i finished recently to a publisher and don't know what the editing format of the pdf should be or how the letter to the publisher should go. ...
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0answers
35 views

When should a chapter end and the next chapter begin? [duplicate]

I writing a short story and I would like to know when I should end a chapter.
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2answers
116 views

Multiple superimposed supers

I'm trying to figure out the correct formatting for multiple supers for the intro of my film. I imagine four separate superimposed lines, one appears, then fades away, until they are finished. How ...
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1answer
82 views

Should the first paragraph after a chapter be indented if it is quoted dialogue?

In my manuscript I generally do not indent the first paragraph following a chapter heading. This generally looks good and reads well with the exception of starting a chapter with quoted dialogue. See ...
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4answers
10k views

How do I sign a (formal) email?

My email client includes a signature beneath the text of my writing. Currently it is of the form: ------------ John Doe Acme Widget Company 123 Elm Street Metropolis, USA phone:222-555-1212 email:...
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2answers
44 views

Proper use of first-last name in a obituary?

I have to write my fathers obituary. I am not sure when it is proper to use a full name. We have kids, grand kids, and great grand kids. Are there rules or guidelines for using full names and what ...
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1answer
36 views

Where should a “list of poems” be placed in a book of prose?

I am working with an author to typeset their prose. It is a sizable book with a dozen of chapters in which characters sing songs and read verses from various media. The author wants a list of all ...
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2answers
45 views

Subfigures in a figure, how to label?

So if I later refer to figure 2 (i) or figure 2 (ii) would it be better for the figure to be labelled as is Figure 2: Figure (i) shows cycle C? or Figure 2: (i) shows cycle C or Figure 2: ...
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4answers
1k views

How do I remove Nikkud (vowel marks) from a Word 2016 document?

I am working on a commentary on Ethics of the Fathers and I want readers to be able to read sources I'm quoting in their original Hebrew. I am getting most of my sources from sefaria.org and ...
4
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1answer
149 views

What does nk means in line spacing?

I see in some journals that mention the line spacing in MS Word in terms of "nk". What does that mean and how can I set that in the Word? For example in this link, it states: 2 nk spaces should ...
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3answers
95 views

Using a prominent phrase from the title of a film in the body of an article, essay or paper, without referencing the title

I'll start with a clear example. You are writing an essay about the film The Wizard of Oz. Following the rules of titles, you put the film title in italics whenever you use it. But then you use the ...
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2answers
111 views

Awkward language translation

So I’m currently writing a book that takes place in Finland, though I am American and speak English. My main character’s name can be used as a play on words, and people use it to mock him throughout ...
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4answers
2k views

How to format quick flashes in a screenplay?

Question : In my screenplay, the main character occasionally suffers quick flashes, like visions. I have been unable to assert if I am formatting these correctly. Please also note the single and ...
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1answer
86 views

Unit of measurement and formatting

Often I see mm stuck with the number like this: 9mm semi auto pistol. However, in most situations we see "10 km", so are there specific rules in certain situations? Because it seems for gun the unit ...
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1answer
34 views

Telephone Conversations [duplicate]

The Situation: I am writing a short story. My POV character is listening to another person having a telephone conversation. The POV character only hears the one person speaking and not the responses. ...
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8answers
3k views

Very simple markup language for writing fiction

I'm using a plain text editor (Vim) to write a fiction piece (chapter book), and I'm wondering what markup languages others use for such a task? I'm looking for something exceedingly simple, it does ...
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2answers
173 views

Formatting multiple languages while avoiding italics for native speakers in their POV

Looking at this question, I was trying to figure out how to format a small family of novels and short stories that use a number of languages. My original approach went with the above question's style. ...
3
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2answers
77 views

Switching languages within dialogue [duplicate]

I'm writing a story which requires frequent switching between languages, sometimes in the same sentence. I thought about writing the foreign language in italics, but the problem is that I already use ...
2
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1answer
49 views

Specific MLA Question on In-Text Citation

How do I format an in-text citation in MLA format when the sentence ends as a parenthesis? For example: Stuart Appleby won three races in his career (but lost all others) (Fredricks 23). It looks ...

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