…by which I do not mean, pour Italian dressing all over your keyboard or manuscript. Yes, it would be tasty, but not entirely sanitary. So, how about using the Italics feature in your word processor instead?
“But I already know how to use the italics feature,” you say.
“Writing in second person won’t convince them,” I reply.
Er… moving on, what I’m talking about here is using Italics for any and all media references included in your manuscript. This can apply to any genre – contemporary, fantasy, historical – because it includes all of these things:
- TV shows
- Radio Shows
- Specific works of art
All of these things need, nay, deserve to be named in Italics on the pages of your manuscript.
“That’s all well and good,” you may say, “But I thought we were supposed to use quotation marks for some of those?”
Ah… quotation marks are a different beast altogether. You would use quotation marks for media like:
- Stories (which are not full-length books)
- TV episodes
- Famous photographs
Why do those items get the short end of the stick and only receive quotation marks? Well, my friends, that’s simply the way of the world. A good general rule to remember this by is: If it’s a complete work with multiple components, put it in italics. If it’s a work that belongs in a larger collection, put it in quotation marks. Of course, this will just confuse you when it comes to things like paintings/works of art/photographs, but I did say it was a general rule.
Have you used this system in the past, or have you been playing a guessing game with media in your manuscripts?