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14

In general, to convey poetic line breaks in "continuous text", replace the line break with a slash. "I've never seen a purple cow./I never hope to see one./But I can tell you anyhow,/I'd rather see than be one." I don't use Twitter so I can't say if this convention is commonly used there, but it's the normal convention in other contexts.


10

em dashes are usually used to denote an interruption or sudden change — whether in dialogue, thought or narrative — ellipses are for pauses, again in all respects. 'I just don't see why— 'I don't care what you think,' Johan barked, turning from me before I could protest. 'She was just...' His face turned pale as his memory returned to that ...


7

Germany Typographic rules (e.g. Forssman/de Jong, Detailtypographie), the most prominent, quasi-official orthographic authority (Duden), and Wikipedia all say: A punctuation mark following emphasized text (in italics, boldface, small caps, caps, letter spacing, etc.) is also emphasized. Exceptions are quotation marks and brackets, especially if only ...


7

It is called an epigraph or motto.


6

Those (and dialogue) are all quotations. The first might be quoting Sophia or an unnamed sarcastic commentator or someone else. The second quotes Genesis. The third quotes the character's anthropomorphized common sense. All quotations. So punctuate them like other quotations.


6

Try to give each character their own paragraphs. Alice sits on the bench, silent. Eventually, I speak. "What are we going to do?" After a long pause, she responds. "I don't think we can do anything." Note, I chose the period after 'responds'. 'Responds' isn't interchangeble with 'says'. For example, all these are valid... she says, "I don't ...


5

There are a number of variations that are recommended in various on-line screenwriting guides, including side-by-side or linearly but using a directive like 'during' At Story Sense they say When writing dialogue in two columns to indicate simultaneous speeches, the left margin of the first dialogue column must be inset slightly. It must not start in the ...


5

Writing a word in ALL CAPS might be frowned upon because it is considered a visual equivalent of shouting, but shouting is a spoken form of emphasis, so ALL CAPS might be just what you need. Internet tradition (dating back to list serves, etc.) has used the underbar as a signal for italics: I will _never_ eat another steak. The underbar harkens back to ...


4

A postscriptum was added to a handwritten letter to avoid having to copy all of it only to add in an afterthought. When you write digitally and have the option to easily rewrite any part of your letter before you email it, a postscriptum is completely out of place. An email, especially to a person of consequence to your carreer, should be a carefully ...


4

Your academic department may have posted guidelines for this. For example, the Rutgers Graduate school has posted an Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Style Guide, complete with sample pages. They suggest an easy-to-read font in 10-12 point type, but other schools may have different requirements. Many schools may require that you use an existing style ...


4

I might use an M-dash for the whale example, because it's startling. For the gold watch, that's more of a thoughtful pause, so it would take an ellipsis. Also related on this site: Using dashes in writing dialogue and How not to overuse ellipsis?


4

Four options: Look at Wikipedia. All the footnotes are at the bottom of the page but linked to from the footnote number (and in turn linking back up to the referring anchor). Familiarize yourself with HTML to understand how in-page links work, if you need to. Link to footnote: Link from footnote back to the refering footnote number: Have clicking the ...


4

It's not always so different. There are just a set of rules in hollywood, there isn't really in bollywood. So in bollywood you write as you please and so sometimes it looks more like the hollywood-style, one minute per page format, and other times like a stage-play-script. Sometimes in bollywood there is no dialogue but just a treatment and then someone else ...


4

For a printed book, consider a fixed-width font like Courier. Or you can get fancier and use a font designed to look like 1990s computer text. I know that computer text doesn't look like that any more, but readers will make allowances. For e-books, you may not have any control over the font that the reader sees. But you can try all caps, adding left and ...


3

For a thesis report, different academic citation systems have different styles. I am more familiar with MLA style rather than Chicago, which someone has already discussed. MLA asks that every paragraph is indented and that there are no extra lines separating paragraphs. The only exception I know of to this rule is if you have a multi-line paragraph quote ...


3

First, ask yourself if all the illustrations are necessary (i.e. are these screen captures illustrating a screen with one button on them?). The reader is going to be very annoyed having to flip back and forth between the procedure and the diagram. I don't have any links to show you for that, but I've done actual testing with users and the overwhelming ...


3

Why should the format of movie scripts from different movie making traditions be the same?!? Here is a typical Italian two column movie script: http://www.cinetecadibologna.it/imageserver/lightboxenlarge/files/biblioteca/sceneggiature/donati/photogallery/la%20grande%20caccia.jpg


3

"Muzak" is also called elevator music. It is characterized by soft, usually slowed, instrumental versions of songs that are typically played in department stores, as hold music, or (per the name) in elevators. They are meant to be soothing and unobtrusive background sounds to avoid what could be uncomfortable silence. It is so named because the company most ...


3

If you hold down the Shift key and press Enter it adds a line break. Apparently it won't work in some clients, but I just tried it on a tweet and it seems to work.


3

There's no universal standard for this, or at least not in fiction. Books generally pick one style and stick with it. Larger narrative breaks than a section break can be indicated by starting a new chapter. The exception is in printed books that use extra space between paragraphs to designate the end of a section, and when this happens at the end of a ...


3

Author's preference is, of course, the deciding factor, but one has to take into account readability as well. Using extra space to determine a scene change is not very common and it is possible that the reader could misinterpret it as a formatting error, or perhaps just be confused by it, whereas the three dots send a clear message that this is an ...


3

Check the manuscript guidelines of where you're submitting. Anything else is a personal style preference. Some manuscript guidelines require straight quotes, some ask for curly quotes throughout. In general, short fiction tends to require straight quotes (particularly when submitted in the body of an email, or pasted into a web form) and novels tend to ...


3

Short Answer.... Yes. Doable. But, there are a few other things programmers do... Formatting the Text with Decorators... Often times, computer errors will be presented with some type of inline decoration. It is generally safe to assume that putting the '>' character in front of every new line of text will help make your error text look like computer ...


2

Different fonts have been created for different purposes, and you should select a font depending on that purpose. Helvetica and Times, for example, are common fonts that have been created to be easily readable in print. Arial and Verdana, on the other hand, were created specifically to be easily readable on a screen. Both Arial and Verdana look ugly in ...


2

According to Chicago, poetry or verse (which lyrics are), of more than two lines should be in block quotes. A blockquote is indented either left or right and can be further set off by being a smaller or different font. As to whether it should be italics, Chicago doesn't require it. That would seem to be a stylistic choice and, as long it is done ...


2

This is a matter of style and totally up to you. In most cases (period, comma) people will not see the difference. For exclamation marks and question marks it is more obvious. For me it looks better when these marks are italicized: Do you really want to eat this? On the other hand, I would never make them bold or include them into the link formatting. ...


2

You have several different options here, depending on what effect you're trying to achieve. Chat room dialogue is a little tough to work with, because it's pure dialogue, with no emotion or action or simple visibility. Oftentimes, it's enough to say something like, "Roy chatted with Samantha. 'OMG my mom's addicted to FOX news like you wouldn't ...


2

Small caps can become a temporary convention for something distinct but similar to normal communication. In the same way that ALL CAPS has become symbolic of shouting, other character formatting can be used to imply meaning. In many alternative fiction works, italics is used consistently to symbolize non-verbal telepathic communication. In these cases, ...


2

All caps is for shouting. Small caps could be used as a stylistic device at the beginning of a chapter to look nice, but beyond that I'm struggling to think of where they'd be appropriate. Maybe to quote a poster? For the T-shirt example, if the text on the shirt itself is not in all caps, I'd italicize it (or put it in quotes).


2

I found this at the Online Writing Lab concerning quoting poetry (emphasis added): If the quotation is three lines or longer, set it off like a block quotation (see above). Some writers prefer to set off two-line verse quotations for emphasis. Quote the poem line by line as it appears on the original page. Do not use quotation marks, and indent one inch ...



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