Hyphens, En Dashes, Em Dashes
Q. How would you punctuate an invented noun? I am editing a theoretical work that uses adjective + -ness to come up with new forms of abstract concepts along the lines of Americanness and pinkness. For both of those words, I would close the suffix and omit the hyphen; my author has them separated with a hyphen (pink-ness). Which is correct style?
A. Chicago style leans the way you do, generally closing up suffixes unless a spelling is awkward. Pinkness and Americanness seem pretty straightforward without hyphens, but that’s an editorial decision rather than a pronouncement that they’re “correct.” If a word isn’t in the dictionary, the writer must decide on a styling, knowing that others might choose differently.