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

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5
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5answers
145 views

How to handle a pidgin language?

Question: In reference to this question about how to show a foreign language in a manuscript, I am wondering: What is the best way to handle a pidgin language in a manuscript? In a wider sense: How ...
0
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1answer
76 views

Writing the role of the actor in a movie/play

When writing a script / screen play would you write it as 'Vin Diesel says:...' or as the character i.e. 'John Smith says:...'
2
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5answers
176 views

How can I stress a certain word in a medium that doesn't allow for font embellishments?

Many of us probably encountered it before on a social media like Facebook or Twitter, or in the comments section of a major website. You've decided what you want to say, but you want to stress a ...
2
votes
2answers
102 views

Has leading changed over the last 15 years?

When I was in primary school, I was told to use 1.0-line leading for papers; in secondary school, this jumped to 2.0 lines; in early tertiary school (i.e. college/university), I was told to use 1.5 ...
1
vote
2answers
45 views

Appropriate leading for blogs?

Is there a leading (i.e., line spacing) commonly considered appropriate for most types of blogs? I'm referring, specifically, to "regular" blog posts, i.e. not asides, snippets, galleries, etc.¹ For ...
2
votes
2answers
206 views

Mixing dialogue and action in the same paragraph?

I know you can add dialogue to the same paragraph as an action to show who's talking, but what happens when a character is making a speech and it's broken up by actions (hand movements, looking at ...
9
votes
6answers
1k 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 ...
0
votes
2answers
42 views

Is the word Nazi italicized? [MLA]

Recently my writing tutor told me any word in a foreign language should be italicized. I was unsure if MLA was important to answer this question; just in case, I've included it in the title. I'm ...
7
votes
5answers
39k views

What is the proper way to write time in a manuscript?

I haven't been able to find an answer to this question for a while now. What is the proper way to write time in a manuscript? I'm referring mostly to A.M. and P.M. Should it be written in caps? With ...
2
votes
3answers
87 views

Formatting to show system errors in fiction?

Okay, here's the thing. I'll keep it simple. I use double quotes for general dialogues. Single quotes for flashback dialogues and italicized letters for monologues and emphasis words only. The doubt ...
2
votes
3answers
324 views

Manuscript format: Straight or curly quotation marks?

I'm writing (or at least trying to write) a novel, and using standard manuscript format: 12-point Courier, double-spaced, 1-inch margins, etc. I'm using Google Docs, which automatically converts ...
2
votes
3answers
471 views

How to format multiple inner voices, differentiating the text from dialogue? and omnipresent inner voice

For the occasional use of inner voice, Italics are usually recommended. However I have a protagonist who is speaking with himself all the time, and Italics use quickly becomes tiring and distracting....
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4answers
1k views

“Empty-space” vs “three-dot” scene break

What's the difference between the two? I've seen both in the same book. For example in the Bone Clocks by David Mitchell: Space breaks: He’s clever, I realize. First he makes you grateful. Right. ...
0
votes
2answers
3k views

Hollywood script vs Bollywood script

I was comparing between the formats of scripts from both Hollywood and Bollywood. Following is the first page of the script of Pulp Fiction. And following is the first page of a Bollywood film, Jab ...
3
votes
2answers
118 views

What is the correct formatting for actions taken before dialogue?

What would be the correct way to format the following exchange in narrative prose? Is it: Alice sits on the bench, silent. Eventually, I speak. "What are we going to do?" After a long pause, she ...
6
votes
1answer
458 views

What are the poetry/quotes at the start of a chapter/book called?

For instance, "A Rasin in the Sun" starts with the poem "Harlem." I've noticed many (mostly contemporary) novels will start chapters with pieces of Poetry or quotes that are completely separate from ...
8
votes
6answers
2k 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 ...
3
votes
3answers
728 views

How to convey newlines in tweeted poetry, if at all?

Suppose I've written a haiku as 3 consecutive lines with standard punctuation as if it was normal free text, which means I don't use special punctuation at the end of a line just because it's the end ...
5
votes
1answer
83 views

footnotes in non-paginated media

How should footnotes be attached to a text that doesn't form pages? Say, a lengthy text, over 10,000 words as a single webpage but with formatting limited to static text; I have no options to make ...
0
votes
2answers
337 views

Should I write “also known as” in full or as an acronym (aka)?

Example: It was located in the East Coast National Scenic Area, also known as China's Last Unspoiled Land. Is that how it should be written? Should I put it in quotes? Lowercase?
10
votes
2answers
2k views

When should I use punctuation with bullets?

When writing bulleted items, what are the rules for placing periods? Presumably bulleted items that aren't sentences wouldn't require punctuation: Orange Apple Banana But how about sentence ...
1
vote
2answers
114 views

Should I drop the quotation marks in a chapter that consists mostly on a character telling a story?

The structure looks like this: Chapter 10 (...) And so Cath began telling me her tale. Which turned out to be grimmer than I'd expected. Chapter 11 "I've been suffering from ...
1
vote
2answers
4k views

How do I choose the most appropriate font for a professional document?

I've written many documents at school, but there is one thing I'm always struggling with: Font types. I never know which font to choose for which occasion. At the moment I'm writing a document that ...
3
votes
1answer
66 views

Is there any research about the efficacy of illustration and example placement in procedure writing?

In writing procedural documentation, I have the choice of writing the complete step-by-step instructions with references to an appendix of illustrations, For instance: 1. Do task 1 (see Fig. 1) 2. ...
1
vote
1answer
30 views

Time of Day Notes for Internal Scenes

In a script or screenplay, is it necessary (or correct at all) to include time-of-day tags for internal scenes in which exterior lighting does not feature at all (for example, in a maintenance duct or ...
9
votes
2answers
6k views

When should one use a section sign (§)?

When I asked this on English.SE, the question was closed; it was suggested that I ask on Writers.SE instead. To be clear, I mean the section sign § (utf-8: 0xC2 0xA7), which is available via \S in ...
1
vote
1answer
5k views

Right font style and size for a master thesis

I'm writing a master thesis for my master in economics. Given that the thesis is not expected to be too much formal (the master itslef is very practical and little theoretical) I want to use good ...
2
votes
3answers
223 views

When to use normal caps and small caps in fiction?

Sometimes I don't know which one to use. For instance, what kind should I use when referring to the stamping on a t-shirt? Mark wore a t-shirt that said, SAVE WATER, DRINK BEER.
3
votes
4answers
743 views

Should I use ellipses or em dashes to denote pauses in speech?

I flipped open its latch and peered inside. A—gold tooth? I flipped open its latch and peered inside. A ... gold tooth? Was it an elephant? No, elephants didn't frequent beaches. It ...
3
votes
1answer
234 views

Non-dialogue sections: single quotes or double quotes?

Should I write: I haven't met Sophia after our 'friendly' meeting. or I haven't met Sophia after our "friendly" meeting. The sight reminded me of a part of the Genesis that Mom used ...
3
votes
2answers
482 views

How to format Facebook chat in a novel?

When I write a chat dialogue in a novel, how should I format it? Since it is not direct speech, it obviously needs no quotation marks, but should I use italics, repeat the names, or how else is chat ...
1
vote
1answer
249 views

Scrivener capitalization issues

I have a Scrivener formatting question. Using Scrivener (on Mac), I'm trying to put a poem into a page of a novel. Scrivener keeps capitalizing the first word of the next line even though the previous ...
0
votes
1answer
300 views

Precedence: P.S or Address?

In an e-mail similar to this, where is it correct to add a post script? Before or after the signature? Dear Professor X, I am John Smith.... ​Sincerely yours, ​ John Smith P.S....
3
votes
2answers
8k 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: "...
2
votes
2answers
92 views

Why do page headers seldom include chapter/section numbers?

In many of my course books, the header of each page includes a page number, and the name of the current chapter and section. Only in a few of the books the headers include the chapter and section ...
3
votes
1answer
309 views

How to capitalize the first line of a paragraph using styles in OpenOffice?

I am formatting a document as a novel using OpenOffice Writer. I have a paragraph style for the main body, and another style derived from it that is the first paragraph in a chapter. I've set up this ...
2
votes
1answer
132 views

How to format a novel synopsis

Is it standard practice to format a synopsis in the same manner as a manuscript (double line spacing, indented first line, 12 point, aligned left, times new roman size 12) when submitting to an agent/...
0
votes
1answer
289 views

MLA sequential quotes on same page

I have a piece of text in an essay where I'm quoting different pieces of a paragraph found on the same page. I'm not sure how to cite this. This question shows how to cite if there are different pages,...
4
votes
4answers
482 views

Is there such a thing as the “master copy” of a book?

The process for movies and music is pretty well-known and thoroughly documented on Wikipedia. You shoot a movie, edit it and then you produce a "master copy" from which all later copies of the movie ...
3
votes
1answer
161 views

Is there a standard - tab versus blank line?

I was taught to leave a blank line between two paragraphs but not indent the first line of the next paragraph. I noticed that many people seem to not leave the line and choose to indent instead. Is ...
2
votes
1answer
207 views

Preventing units from being “broken” to the next line

I'm having trouble with keeping "units" on the same line, or together. For example, g C m-2 (grams of carbon per square meter) often gets broken between the "-" and "2". I realize it's possible to use ...
2
votes
1answer
47 views

Author order and grouping on technical document

This question pertains to author/contributor order and grouping on a technical document. I performed tests on some equipment and had two other people directly involved. My boss and his boss need to ...
2
votes
2answers
10k views

what is the most commonly used font in book publishing?

I am choosing fonts for book design and want to know what font the average book uses? Is it possible to use calligraphy as a font in a book?
3
votes
2answers
2k views

How do you write a character's internal monologue?

I've seen two main methods of writing a character's inner monologue One is to use italics Dean is being silly thought Sam Another is to quote the text "Dean is being silly" thought Sam Or you could ...
2
votes
3answers
306 views

How do I search for tick marks not smart quotes in Word?

I'm doing a proofing check of a book prior to submitting to publication and want to make sure it's as neat as possible before doing so. Recently, I've had to merge two versions of the document - from ...
5
votes
5answers
1k views

Do empty pages need a number?

I would like to start each chapter on the right side of the book, as there are few chapters with a different point of view. I know numbering has to continue on the white page which might appear in ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

Bullets vs. Numbering: which to use when?

A writer can either choose to use bullets or else stick to conventional (or in certain cases non-conventional) numbering. Are there set guidelines about when to use what? Is the use of numbering ...
2
votes
2answers
113 views

Capitalization of personal event names

I am working with a friend on a essay and we have encountered a capitalization question. The book we are analyzing is The Assault by Harry Mulisch. The central event in the book is the attack on his ...
2
votes
4answers
8k 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:...
5
votes
2answers
437 views

Script Writing as it pertains to TV and Radio lines

If a Radio or TV needs to be audible. How is that written in a Script? Is it written like the characters, or is written in the description in parentheses?