SMP Magazine Style Guide
This style guide is modelled after the current edition of the Style Manual: http://australia.gov.au/publications/style-manual
Article Submission Guidelines
- All articles must be submitted in Word format ONLY.
- Always include a headline, and your byline.
- Do not use headers or footers.
- Include a word count at the end of your article.
- The word count for one page is 500 words; two pages, 1000 words etc. Please do not over or under write your article.
- Standard unjustified setting (flush left, ragged right).
- Arial font (11 point, black).
- 5 line spacing.
- Separate each new paragraph with a space (no indenting). These should be no more than four sentences long.
- List any queries to the editor/designer in track change comments. This includes if you want words/phrases to stand out from the rest of the article.
- At least one image must be supplied to go with the article. It is the writer’s responsibility to ensure they have permission to use any images they have sourced for their article. Images must be in high res (300 dpi to a specification size of 297mm (h) x 210mm (w). Or image files must be at least 1mb in size. Jpegs are preferred).
- Do not embed images into a word document; they need to be in a separate folder. The folder name must include the title of the article.
- Exact wording is needed for crediting photos (i.e. the name, website or email; whatever the photographer or artist wants mentioned).
- Acronyms must be written in full the first time you use them. Never assume the reader knows who/what you are referring to.
- Check any links are correct and working before submission. Hyperlinked text needs to be coloured in blue with the link next to it, like so:
‘In The Age there was an article about protecting refugee rights that highlighted the living conditions www.age.com/refugeerightsaustralia and their devastating effects.’
Article Structure: List the theme/section, title, subheading, your name & contact details, body of text, web links, and images & their source, like so:
Theme: Book review
Title: Changing the World One Day at a Time
Subheading: A Book About How We Can Change the World
Name: Sarah Mokrzycki
Contact Details: email@example.com
Body of Text:
- Use maximum capitalisation (capitalise all words other than articles, prepositions and conjunctions) for all titles and headings. For example:
To Kill a Mockingbird
Williamstown Literary Festival
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
- Quoted speech should always be capitalised, even if beginning mid-sentence. For example:
She said, ‘There has got to be a better example of this.’
However, if speech is interrupted and then resumed, the first word (unless a proper noun or name) should be in lower case. For example:
‘If there is a better way,’ she said, ‘then I can’t be arsed thinking of one.’
- Trademark, organisation, brand and model names are to be capitalised. For example:
Numbers and Measurements
- All numbers that open sentences are to be written out. For example:
One hundred and twenty-five years ago, something rather strange happened …
- Apostrophes are not to be used when writing decades (1980s not 1980’s)
- Percentages need to written out as per cent, do not use the symbol %
- Dates should be written as such:
8 March 2014
- Numbers up to one hundred are to be written out. Use numerals for all other numbers.
- Numerals are to be used for all specific measurements/instructions. Place a space between all numerals and any following abbreviations/words. For example:
Cook for 20 minutes.
- Words are to be used for general/approximate time. For example:
She was twenty minutes late.
She had to leave at ten o’clock.
She catches the eight-thirty bus to work.
- Use numerals when exact times are needed. Place a period between the hour and minutes and a space between am/pm, if using them. For example:
It was scheduled for 10.22 am, but the train arrived at 10.27.
- No stops to follow abbreviated titles (Ms not Ms.)
- Spaced en dashes (not hyphens) are to be used to separate sentences, like so:
Here are four words – and here are a whole lot more following an en dash.
- Words following colons should be in lower case. For example:
I was thrilled: this new game meant even more ways to avoid responsibility.
- All punctuation should follow brackets, not be placed within them, unless the brackets contain a full sentence. For example:
She was determined to try macaroni and cheese pizza (and damn the consequences).
(She was determined to try macaroni and cheese pizza.)
- As a general rule, the Oxford comma is not to be used. For example:
I need your name, date of birth, address and telephone number.
I need your name, date of birth, address, and telephone number.
The Oxford comma is only used when items are joined by ‘and’:
Her favourite foods were macaroni cheese, chocolate, and bacon and eggs.
Her favourite foods were macaroni cheese, chocolate and bacon and eggs.
Or if it is needed for clarity:
This sentence is kind of long-winded and as such becomes a bit of a chore to read without breaks, so times like this are when you need to breathe, step back, and use the Oxford comma toaid your reading experience.
- Commas should be used to introduce and end quoted speech. For example:
She said, ‘Notice that comma there to my left?’
‘Oh yeah, and here’s another,’ he said.
- Ellipses should only ever be three full stops with a space either side … Like so. Words following ellipses should only be capitalised if beginning a new sentence. For example:
I see you shiver with antici … pation.
Here’s the end of a sentence … And here’s the start of a new one!
Now here’s one part of a sentence … and the other.
However, no space is required after ellipses if punctuation follows. For example:
‘Like so …’
(Like so …)
- All quotes and dialogue should use double quotation marks with the punctuation placed inside. For example:
She was quoted as saying, “Here’s my quote.”
- All terms and phrases (if in need of quotation marks) should use single quotation. For example:
The term ‘land grabbing’ has gained recent media attention.
Perhaps it’s not ‘all in a day’s work’ for this worker.
- Quotes within quotes/dialogue should use single quotation marks. For example:
“Please say ‘hello’ from me,” she said.
- Always use Australian spelling, but never change the spelling of names to fit this rule. (E.g. The World Health Organization retains its ‘z’.)
- Preferences for words with spelling variations:
‘All right’ as opposed to ‘alright’
‘Cooperate’ as opposed to ‘co-operate’
‘No one’ as opposed to ‘no-one’
‘Okay’ as opposed to ‘Ok’
‘Program’ as opposed to ‘programme’
- Use ‘a’ or ‘an’ based on the sound of the following word. Words with vowel sounds (whether the first letter is a vowel or not) use ‘an’. For example:
If making reference to titles, please observe the following:
- Italicise titles of long works (books, plays, films, TV shows, magazines etc). For example:
The Simpsons is an awesome show. Or was fifteen years ago, anyway …
Much Ado about Nothing is my favourite Shakespearean play.
- Use single quotation marks for short works (poetry, TV episode titles etc).
‘And Maggie Makes Three’ is a great Simpsons episode.
‘The Road not Taken’ is a poem by Robert Frost.