How to Use Notes and Bibliographies

The next item on the Nonfiction Editing Checklist has to do with citing your sources: ☐ Footnotes, endnotes, blind notes, and reference lists have been used appropriately and are formatted correctly. The Chicago Manual of Style offers several options for citing your sources. The first of these is the least formal, and the last is …

Take Extra Care with Scripture Citations

Quoting Shakespeare is one thing. It’s easy enough to open a copy of Hamlet to get a citation right. Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio; a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy.—William Shakespeare. The Tragedy of Hamlet Prince of Denmark. The Harvard Classics 1909–14. Act V, Scene I. Via http://www.bartleby.com/46/2/51.html. But when …

Q&A: Quotations versus Dialogue

Q: I have literally hundreds of quotes in my autobiography, and after reading your post about them, I’m really confused. Most of what I’m writing about is not quoting a known source like Mark Twain. Rather, it’s in the form of he said, “blah, blah, blah” when I’m relating a story or incident. I don’t …

Verify the Sources of Your Quotations

One of the most common problems I see in new writers’ nonfiction manuscripts is quotations that are either inaccurate, insufficiently sourced, or both. ☐You have in your notes, if not in the text, citations and links for your sources. Sites like BrainyQuote, Great-Quotes.com, and even Goodreads, which should know better, propagate quotations without verifying the …

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