Writing Rules

Need a cheat sheet for writing rules?

Of course you do! Following are some excellent tips and writing rules from universities, the government, and experts. The thing is, there are all sorts of writing rules depending on what style guide you follow. If anyone thinks that professional-level writing is simple, they are unaware of the myriad style guides for various writing disciplines. It’s not easy, but I do love it when people produce good content after choosing a style guide and sticking with it.

Click here for my previous blog post on various style guide writing rules. I’m adding a link to HubSpot, which has a good article on digital (online) writing, as well as a link to the APA style blog (American Psychological Association) which is full of capitalization writing rules.

While you’re at it, it doesn’t hurt to check out the Wikipedia page listing of various style guides. And there are even more style preferences below.

Let’s start with a chart from Towson University regarding capitalization (simple, basic, but still quite useful). Then let’s move to a pdf from Friends University Writing Center, below.

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More on When and When Not to Capitalize According to Grammar Girl

Diseases named after people or regions are capitalized according to Grammar Girl’s Quick and Dirty Tips.

  • Do capitalize Alzheimer disease, Alzheimer’s, Ebola, West Nile Virus, Lou Gehrig’s disease.
  • Do capitalize the acronyms for diseases (MD, ALS).
  • Do not capitalize diabetes, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

Capitalization Rules According to GrammarBook

Check out this link for capitalization rules according to GrammarBook, a grammar and punctuation resource guide. While you’re at it, click here for GrammarBook’s advice on effective writing.

Disability Style Guide

The National Center on Disability and Journalism is a wonderful resource for writings. Check out the disability language style guide here.

The Alzheimer’s Association style guide is here.

Scientific Nomenclature Style Guides

You may need help with scientific nomenclature (bacterial and viral taxa). Click here for writing rules from the Centers for Deisease Control & Pevention— fungi, genes, proteins, restriction enzymes, viruses, virus acronyms. See a list of human gene names here.

The Daily Writing Tips blog shares a post on when to capitalize animal or plant names.

Questions on writing rules? Contact melanie@melaniesaxtonmedia.com and let’s get started!