What’s your style?

I’m not talking about the clothes you wear. I’m sure you’re very stylish!

In my role as a copyeditor, I talk a lot about consistency. It’s your ‘style’, it’s how you do things. From a copy perspective, it’s about how you put, or style, words on your page.

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That can include things like capitals, punctuation, paragraphs and chapter titles.

But as a new writer, or indeed a new editor, getting a sense of what a style should look like can be intimidating. Here are a few, freely available, style guides to show you how others approach this task.

I would be delighted to find more style guides, particularly any US, Canadian, Australian or New Zealand style guides. Please leave comments below if you know of any and I’ll gladly include them in my list!

The Guardian Style Guide. The newspaper.

The NHS Content Style Guide. The National Health Service. Interesting for punctuation use that I will be covering in a later blog post.

The Government Digital Service style guide. From the UK government, or should that be the Government? Hint: look at the ‘G’ page to find out!

WHO Editorial Style Manual. The World Health Organization’s style guide (PDF). Not also, it’s the World Health Organization not organisation. It’s their name, they get to choose “s” or “z”!

Nick (he/him) is an editor and proofreader, specialising in LGBTQ+ writing. He is an Intermediate Member of the Chartered Institute of Editing and Proofreading and a member of PEN, the Professional Editors Network.

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Published by Nick Taylor | Editor & Proofreader

Editor and proofreader specialising in LGBTQ+ writing, both fiction and non-fiction.

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