Friday, January 22, 2016

New Year, New Rules?

Hello, dearies! It's that time again. Off with the old, on with the new, and adjust everything in between. I must confess to lagging a bit behind in the Great Closet Sweep, but I have managed to rid myself of several "church socks."

If you're like many people, the breath of fresh air that is seasonal style change can feel more like an arctic blast, chilling you to the bone and shoving you in directions that you'd rather not go. Fortunately, there is a safe harbor for the steadfast soul: the Chicago Manual of Style.

From its humble beginning in 1891 as a single-page in-house style sheet for the University of Chicago Press, the CMOS has slowly grown into a behemoth volume of more than one thousand pages. Now in its sixteenth edition (2010), the CMOS is considered "the industry leader on style matters."

To keep pace with expanding knowledge, perspectives, and vocabulary within the publishing industry, the CMOS editorial staff utilizes an advisory board composed of authors, scholars, and publishing and business professionals. Users of the Manual have also provided input, making the current edition and its online counterpart the most up-to-date and comprehensive style guide available.

While trends may sizzle, shizzle, and quickly fizzle, the rules of written style are never swayed by the fickle winds of fashion. If stability is what you seek, the Chicago Manual of Style is your cornerstone.

Until next time, duckies; bundle up, buckle down, and remember---a well-turned phrase is always in style!

As snow continues to fall, the Style Maven considers starting the fashion of wearing multiple layers of quilts while burrowing under wool blankets. You can read about her adventures as The Procraftinator at


  1. Yeah for The Style Maven. I've missed you. Do you think the CMOS will be updated soon? It's six years old and there are all those new tech terms that have come out that most of us have no idea how to handle them. Capitalize or not? Try to get that funny little copyright image after the word? Have you ever done that? That funny little "c" never stays where I try to put it. Sigh... I guess until I hear from you, I will keep all my writing in the previous century. Then I can refer to the CMOS with confidence.

  2. Yep ... CMOS never goes out of style ... just like the charcoal-grey suit I keep in my closet (always in the dry-cleaning plastic cover) for weddings and funerals.

  3. Fortunately for me, my editor is a devotee.

  4. I, too, am a devotee. The CMOS is always my go-to resource.


The Blood-Red Pencil is a blog focusing on editing and writing advice. Some of our contributors are editors, some are authors, and some are writing sheep. Yes, sheep.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...