Q. I’m editing an e-newsletter in which the e-mailed page includes the first few lines of each article, ending with a link that says “Read the full article.” In some (not all) cases, the first few lines of the articles end in the middle of sentences. The designer has inserted ellipses in these cases. (Example: Congress passed legislation that . . . Read the full article.) No words are omitted—but I can’t think of anything better than ellipses. What do you say?
Q. How do you set apart a word as a word in a sentence? As in “We are all aware the word fat could be offensive.” Would fat be in quotes, italicized, or just left alone?
Q. In an article I am editing, the book title Di kupe appears (kupe is Yiddish for “heap”), and in the text the author will use the Yiddish word kupe instead of heap. I am following CMOS advice to italicize a foreign word if it is not in the dictionary. However, since the word and the title are the same, I am afraid that it might confuse the reader. Should I translate the Yiddish word when it is not used as a title?
Q. Dear CMOS: In a business directory, each company’s page has a section for office locations. It just lists the place-names, not addresses. For example, the places where one company has offices are
My concern as a copyeditor is that the locations are a mix of states, cities, and business districts. Is it being persnickety to edit to
—Madison Avenue, New York City, New York
—San Diego, California
—Silicon Valley, California
—Wall Street, New York City, New York
My problem with the second list is that non-Americans wouldn’t know, and maybe wouldn’t care, what “level” of geography Illinois and Nevada are (the directory is to be marketed outside the country). I could list the states first and put the specific area in parentheses: California (Silicon Valley), but for an IT company, the important detail is Silicon Valley and not California. Thanks for your advice!
Q. I have been editing a book written in English by a European historian, whose likely publishers do not have an English-language editor, so I have nobody to consult. I was specifically instructed to use Chicago style. There are many references to heights of monuments, in meters. The targeted readership is probably academic. Is it necessary to give the American equivalent in each case?
Q. With Greek, Arabic, Hebrew, and other non-Latin scripts, should one still italicize words used as words, per 7.58? This comes up a lot in the material I edit. Since the point of italics is to indicate that the word is foreign, does the fact of the non-Latin script accomplish that, thus making italics unnecessary? I had thought so, but then I queried my fellow editors, and many of them seemed to think italics should still be used.
Q. I am editing a book that contains a lot of terms in the Pali language. None of these terms have made it into standard English dictionaries. Most readers will not initially be familiar with most terms. I have not, so far, been able to draw a coherent or helpful distinction between terms used enough that they become familiar to the reader and terms not used that much. Some terms that appear many, many times are used mostly in the final quarter of the book, leaving readers with only occasional exposure to those terms as they encounter them in the first three-quarters of the book. Also, the chapters of this book treat somewhat independent topics, inviting nonsequential reading. Two paths do seem coherent to me: (1) put all Pali terms in italics, irrespective of how many times they occur or where, or (2) put all Pali terms in Roman type, except where the term is being discussed as a term. For guidance, I have looked at two books with a similar density of Pali terms: a considerably more scholarly book (from a British publisher) follows path 1 above, while a slightly more scholarly book (from an American publisher) follows path 2. What do you folks think?
Q. A book endorsement was given by a bishop who has since been elevated to cardinal. The book will soon be reprinted (second edition). Should the endorsement printed on the back cover change to reflect his new title? Or should it remain as it was at the time the endorsement was given?
Q. I work for an art publisher, and all our books include a list of the artist’s exhibitions at the end. In general, to save on space, I do not specify the state or country when the location of the city is well known (New York, Boston, Paris, London, Athens, Zurich, etc.), but my colleague has suggested that this policy is elitist and inconsistent and hard for others to follow because there is no list of “well-known” cities to consult.
Q. I’m confused about what to do when shortening the titles of books. The author refers to Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland as Alice in Wonderland, and I think that it should remain italicized. In addition, there is a dialogue in which a character asks, “Do you remember in Harry Potter, when the students are walking up the stairs?” I also think this should be italicized, but I can’t find an answer.