Mar 30 2011
William Shunn’s guide to manuscript formatting is the best reference I’ve seen on this subject. If I could add some minor formatting points that should be obvious:
- Please do not ever use more than one exclamation mark at time. It looks awful!!!
- Even if you’re writing a heated conversation, please don’t end a string of sentences with exclamation marks! It will look really strange! I wouldn’t recommend it! In a heated conversation, readers can infer that the characters are shouting at each other even if the sentence ends with a period.
- If you’re inclined to capitalize words for emphasis, 1) don’t and 2) if you do, please do so super-sparingly. (No, really, just a FEW times in the manuscript, PLEASE. It’s SO HARD to read when AUTHORS just seemingly use all-caps AT RANDOM).