Manuscript Preparation, Copyediting, and Proofreading

Q. Hello. Are there any samples of manuscript formats for fiction writing in your new updated book?

Q. What are the guidelines for submitting the manuscript of a book for publication?

Q. What is the recommended font style to use for manuscripts, books, etc., to make it easier for the reader?

Q. When breaking a URL, can a hard return be used? If not, how should it be done? You give examples of broken URLs, but it is not clear how that is done according to a press’s and printer’s requirements.

Q. I am editing a history book with three parts. The translator for part 1 and the writer of part 2 are now deceased; part 3 was written by a living person. Do I include birth and death dates on the title page? I also have a separate page beginning each part. Should the birth and death date be included there also or instead? Should the birth date of the living author (and editor) be included?

Q. As a young magazine editor, I was trained to write “TK” to indicate that information or text is “to come.” The habit has stuck with me, although it makes much more sense to use “TBD” (to be decided) or some other (correct) abbreviation. What does “TK” really stand for, and why do we use it?

Q. All my classes have previously used APA format. Now I need to use Chicago. Can you send me the format for my paper and how to cite references from the Internet and class textbook? Thank you.

Q. Hello. I’m editing a manuscript in which the author frequently uses the conjunction “or” in places where “and” would be more appropriate, usually in run-in lists preceded by “such as.” For example, she writes, “Once a day, use a soothing fragrance- and sulfate-free cream cleanser with anti-inflammatory herbs such as aloe or rose.” She indicated to me that she means one would only use one of these items, either aloe or rose, so I changed “herbs” to the singular, but she objected to this alteration. Can you offer any suggestions? Thank you.

Q. How does one go about preparing an index? Any web page I can go to?

Q. I’m editing a series of reports that use abbreviated forms of the sometimes lengthy titles in the footer. Are there any recommended guidelines for abbreviating titles for this purpose (e.g., use of acronyms, elimination of less important prepositional phrases), or is this at the discretion of the author or editor?