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Manuscript formatting rules
The purpose of these formatting rules is to make it easier for the reviewing authors to read and consider your submission, and to save formatting hassles at the production stage should the manuscript be accepted for publication. Manuscripts that do not comply with these rules are by definition not ready for publication by Online Originals, and so they will automatically receive a lower rating by the reviewer. Please note that these formatting rules (see number 27 below) include the requirement to save your manuscript in Microsoft Word format (either .doc or .txt).

Layout
(1) No blank lines between paragraphs, a tabbed indent at the start of each paragraph.
(2) All text left-justified, set to maximum column width (ie, no tables or charts)
(3) No hard returns at line-endings (ie, text runs on within each paragraph)

Characters
(4) No underlines, italics, bold, different sizes of type, multiple fonts, or non-ASCII characters (except accented characters in French, German, Italian or Spanish)
(5) Numbers 'one' through 'ten' spelt out, '11' and above as Arabic numerals

Headings
(6) Highest-level headings (eg, for chapters) in ALL CAPS, with three blank lines before the heading and two blank lines after the heading
(7) Secondary headings (eg, for sections within a chapter) in Initial Caps Only, with one blank line before the heading and one blank line after the heading
(8) Tertiary headings (eg, for divisions within a section within a chapter) in ALL CAPS with one blank line before the heading and none after (ie, heading directly on top of the text)
(9) Bulletised points numbered as 1/ 2/ 3/ with two word spaces after the slash and each bullet formatted as a separate paragraph
(10) For un-headed divisions in any text, use * * *, left-justified, with one blank line before and one blank line after

Notes
(11) Footnotes in text marked as (1), (2), etc with one word space before; footnotes themselves at the end of the entire text, not at the end of chapters

Punctuation
(12) Semi-quote marks to contain names of books, journals, etc, using straight-up-and-down style, not curled
(13) Double-quote marks to contain conversation, quotations, etc, using straight-up-and-down style, not curled
(14) Apostrophes in straight-up-and-down style, not curled
(15) For a long dash (to separate thoughts within a sentence) instead use two hyphens like this -- with one word space on either side
(16) References or reference-footnotes shown as
Author, 'Title', City: Publisher, year, page numbers.
(17) No full stops (periods) used in abbreviations, initials, or titles (eg, cm, CIA, Mr)
(18) No use of &, , \, |, @, *, %, +, =, etc, since many symbols have programming functions on the Web; spell out your meaning (eg, dollars, pounds Sterling, percent, plus, equals)
(19) Historical periods written as 1800s, 1970s, etc with no apostrophe
(20) When listing three or more items, do place a comma before the final 'and'
(21) Use one word space (not two, as in typing) between sentences
(22) Do not put a word space before a question mark or an exclamation point, and only ever use one question mark or exclamation point at a time!
(23) When using a series of full stops (periods) to indicate continuing thoughts or text, use only three and put one word space on either side ... please
(24) Turn off all automatic hyphenation on your word processor and do not split a word over two lines (although the manual hyphenation of hyphenated compound words in the middle of a line are allowed, of course).

Spelling
(25) Please do a complete 'Spell Check' of your work before you submit it. Typos and misspelled words are highly distracting for reviewers and create more work at the production stage. For submissions in English, authors can choose to follow either American spellings or British spellings, but obviously their choice must be applied consistently.

Grammar and style
(26) In terms of writing technique, here's a little casual advice on Online Originals’ preferences. For fiction and drama, nearly anything goes except gratuitous profanity, extreme violence or explicit obscenity. For non-fiction, you should keep in mind that your work will be read across the world. For an internationally-acceptable style of writing in English, we tend to consult Oxford English for grammar and The Economist Style Guide for non-fiction especially (click here). We also suggest that you keep in mind George Orwell's six elementary rules of composition: (a) Never use a metaphor, simile or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing or hearing; (b) Never use a long word where a short word will do; (c) If it is possible to cut out a word, always cut it out; (d) Never use the passive where you can use the active; (e) Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent; (f) Break any of these rules sooner than say anything outright barbarous. (Politics and the English Language, 1946. If you are interested, read the whole fascinating essay here.)

Software
(27) Microsoft Word is our required software format for all submissions. (Typesetting and formatting is done subsequently with page make-up software.) If your manuscript has been produced in another word processing program, you will need to import the text into Microsoft Word and save it as a Microsoft Word file (either .doc or .txt). Online Originals also requires that each manuscript be submitted as a single file. Please do not submit a set of files (for example, separate files for each chapter). Please send instead only one single file containing the entire work.

When you have applied these rules to your manuscript you are welcome to begin the submissions process by proposing your manuscript for review.
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