Periods. Create. A. Full. Stop.



31 August 2014

What does a period say to you when you see one?  By common agreement (in the U.S. English language world, at least), a period usually means: Stop. The end. Finis. When we're writing, it means the end of a thought. It means that what follows the period is a new thought. If we put periods in the middle of our sentences, we confuse our readers—as with the headline above.

So what does this have to do with citing sources?

When we create a reference note, we write our citations in "sentence style." We start a new sentence, we put commas between the elements, and we use an  pair of parentheses; sometimes we use a semicolon when a more-major division is needed. When we're done with citing that source, we put a period at the end.

So what's our point here? When creating a reference note, we don't put periods between elements that identify one specific source.  We're allowed only one exception: i.e., when the period signifies the abbreviation of a word.


Photo credit: "Professor Holding a Stop Sign," CanStockPhoto ( : downloaded 4 August 2014), used under license.