PBSC Style Guide

PBSC Style Guide



Rev. December 2013


Consistency in the style of documentation is as essential to academic writing as clarity of diction, grammatical correctness, and the logical arrangement of ideas. Neglecting any of these can fatally undermine an essay, but the first is particularly important to winning the trust of an attentive reader, especially of this journal, concerned as it primarily is with sources of information and channels of communication. Revising a text for style is the responsibility of the author. In some cases it can be a time-consuming and laborious task. The publications committee will have no choice but to reject any final submission that does not conform to the guidelines below.

Chicago Manual of Style

Follow the Chicago Manual of Style, 16th ed. (2010). The points here only highlight some common issues; authors are encouraged to consult Chicago for full explanation and detailed examples. However, in case of difference between Chicago and an indication below, please follow this style sheet.

Abstract and Bio

Submissions should be accompanied by an abstract of 200–400 words in length and a short biographical statement (one to two sentences).


Submissions must be electronic (Microsoft Word, .doc, .docx, or .rtf), conforming to the following specifications:

  • double-spaced
  • 12-pt type
  • 2.5 cm (1") margins
  • pages numbered (except the first) in the top-right corner.


Use the first spelling in the Canadian Oxford Dictionary, which includes such spellings as centre, metre, advertise, colour, labour, program, analyze, realize, instill, focused, traveller, hemorrhage. For technical terms in the fields of bibliography, editing, and book history, consult the online full-text version of Studies in Bibliography <http://etext.lib.virginia.edu/bsuva/sb/> to identify the most common usage (e.g., title-page with a hyphen has over two thousand uses, while titlepage has 41). In keeping with the title of the journal, use bibliographical instead of bibliographic. Use also the following spellings:



Place quotations within double quotation marks; use single quotation marks only for quotations within quotations. Place periods and commas inside quotation marks, and colons and semi-colons outside.

Run in or set off. Unless the matter of layout or book design is being illustrated, do not offset quotations shorter than 100 words; run these into the text. Set off longer quotations as an indented block.

Italics. Set key terms and words referred to as words in italics on first occurrence, and thereafter in roman.

The practice of supplying foreign books to the Canadian market was known as the agency system.

Scare quotes. Use double quotation marks, at the first instance only, for unusual expressions, jargon, slang, and diction viewed ironically. Subsequent instances of such a word or phrase require no special treatment. Scare quotes should be used sparingly if at all.


Use #…# (a space before and after, but no spaces between, and with no fourth dot at the end of a sentence if the quotation is continuing). Avoid including ellipses at the beginning or at the end of a sentence.


Dates and Numerals

For topics not treated here, such as money, times, fractions, etc., please see the Chicago Manual of Style.

Dates. Use the day-month-year order

26 September 2002                   the thirties (no capitals)

the 1900s (no apostrophe)

Spell out. Spell out numbers from one to a hundred, round numbers such as six hundred or two million, and any number that begins a sentence.

 Ranges.Separate numerical ranges with an en-dash: e.g., 96–99. In general, use only the last two digits of the second number, except when the change is between 1 and 9 or into a new hundred:

2–9                  58–59               295–306

103–6               141–48             1989–93

Percentages. Percentages are usually given as numerals followed by the word percent:

More than 50 percent of the global publishing industry today is run by between five and seven encompassing firms that average US$500 million in revenues each year.


Use a comma before and or or in a series of three or more items (x, y, and z). Use a colon to introduce an example or an explanation of something that has just been said, or to introduce a quotation, or to separate a title from a sub-title.

Hyphen and Dash

In general, follow the Canadian Oxford for word hyphenation. Hyphenate compound modifiers before the noun (e.g., “nineteenth-century literature” or “gold-tooled bindings”).

 En-dash. Use this (rather than a hyphen) for numerical ranges, as exemplified above. PBSC also prefers the visual appearance of the en-dash with spaces before and after (rather than the em-dash) for digressions or itemizations inserted into a sentence:

Although there may be a growing number of publishing houses in general – Books in Print lists over 73,000 in 2003 – more and more of them are owned by a few multinational media corporations.

Names and titles.

When referring to the same person repeatedly, give the full name at the first occurrence, and use the persons last name consistently in subsequent references. Avoid titles such as “Prof.” and “Dr.” so as not to elevate some individuals while inadvertently ignoring others.

First lines

Do not indent the first line of the article or of a section or long quotation. Do indent the first line of other paragraphs.


Include one space only after a period.


For articles and notes, use the footnote style (no endnotes or list of works cited). For book reviews, use parenthetical citations for the book under review and footnotes for other sources. Keep informational notes to a minimum by incorporating the most interesting information into the text and avoiding the addition of tangential material. Note numbers in the text should come after all punctuation marks except the dash. Use ibid. (in roman and capitalized at beginning of note) for repeated, consecutive references to a single source. Avoid using passim, op. cit., and loc. cit.

Shortened citation. For subsequent references, shorten to the authors surname, shortened title, and page.

1. Heather Murray, Come, Bright Improvement! The Literary Societies of Nineteenth-Century Ontario (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2002), 18.

2. Ibid., 23.

17. Murray, Come, Bright Improvement!, 42.


After author and title, enclose the publication information in parentheses. Contributions to a multi-author book must add title and editors of the larger work. PBSC recommends giving the total page range of the chapter and then noting the particular page from which a quotation has been taken with an extra parenthesis.

3. Janet B. Friskney, New Canadian Library: The Ross-McClelland Years, 1952–1978 (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2007), 98.

4. Peter Jaszi and Martha Woodmansee, “Copyright in Transition,” in A History of the Book in America, vol. 4, Print in Motion: The Expansion of Publishing and Reading in the United States 1880–1940, edited by Carl F. Kaestle and Janice A. Radway (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press / American Antiquarian Society, 2009), 90–101 (99).


When citing the online version of a book, include as much information about the original print publication as possible, and end with the URL:

5. Misao Dean, “Duncan, Sara Jeannette (Cotes),” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 15, 1921–1930, ed. Ramsay Cook and Jean Hamelin (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2005), 313–16 (314), http://www.biographi.ca/009004-119.01-e.php?&id_nbr=7912.


Downloaded e-books. Supply the original print information if possible and then add the format of the digital copy and any additional locating information.

6. Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice (New York: Penguin Classics, 2008), Microsoft Reader e-book, chap. 23.

Journal Articles

Print and electronic journal articles are treated similarly, the difference being that the former ends with page numbers and the latter with a URL or DOI. Noting the date of access is usually not necessary for an electronic journal. Note the Chicago manner of citing volume (numeral only) and issue number (preceded by “no.”). As with book chapters, supply both the total page range and the particular page quoted.

9. George L. Parker, “Distributors, Agents, and Publishers: Creating a Separate Market for Books in Canada, 1900–1920. Part 1,” Papers of the Bibliographical Society of Canada / Cahiers de la Société bibliographique du Canada 43, no. 2 (2005): 7–65 (54).

10. Ibid., 55.

13. Parker, “Distributors, Agents, and Publishers,” 56.

17. Don Kuiken and David S. Miall, “Numerically Aided Phenomenology: Procedures For Investigating Categories of Experience,” Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung / Forum: Qualitative Social Research 2, no. 1 (2001), http://www.qualitative-research.net/index.php/fqs/article/view/976/2128.

Websites and Blogs

Online material that is published formally, such as e-books and online journals, should be cited as Chicago recommends. Much online material, however, does not fall under this category; nevertheless, it is important to supply more than a mere URL when referring to it, so that readers may find it even if this changes.

For web pages, include the author (if any), the title of the page, the owner of the site, the date of publication, and a URL. Include the date of access only if no date of publication can be determined.

 23. “WD2000: Visual Basic Macro to Assign Clipboard Text to a String Variable,” revision 1.3, Microsoft Help and Support, last modified 23 November 2006, http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2/212730.


For blogs, include the author, title of the entry, name of the blog, date, and a URL. The author’s name is usually a pseudonym, and noting this is therefore unnecessary:

 46. Mathitak, “User Submitted Blog Post: On the Road,” AllVoices (blog), 13 June 2008, http://www.allvoices.com/user/blog/2495.