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Riripedia's "Manual of Style" is a collection of guidelines and rules of thumb that are designed to set a rough standard for the appearances of all articles. Although style is generally not considered the most important factor in the writing of an article, it is an important factor in the writing of good articles (or even the perfect article). The manual of style is designed to make articles easier to read and comprehend, to make articles better organized and easier to edit.

Above all, realize that these rules are not set in stone! They are considered guidelines for making an article appear more attractive to the reader, to make them easier to work with. If you think you have a better way of writing your article, by all means go ahead and be bold! Copy-editing riripedians will come along later and start the weeding process, and rework pages to better conform to the guide if necessary. Better yet, add your own idea on this page as an additional option for adding style to an article. (However, please don't remove existing guidelines, just add your own new ones.)

If you're looking for information on how to write an article in wiki markup, please see how to edit a page for instructions. As that article is more about how to use markup, this article is concerned about the when, where, and why of using specific markup. Please also read the Guide to Layout for suggestions on how to organize your article.

In all cases, examples of styles will be indented from the main margin for emphasis.

Introducing an articleEdit

At the beginning of every article, the title or subject of that article should be bold in the first line. Even though the article title is already listed, it is useful to emphasize the article's subject for the reader. (Don't forget to also use italicized text when necessary. See Manual of Style (titles) for further information.)

SongsEdit

The song's credit should be placed at the start of the article within a {{infobox song}} template.

{{infobox song | name = NameOfTheSong | image = Image:TheImageName.png | artist = Artist(s) | written = Writter(s) | producer = Producer(s) }}

Any information contained in the infobox is not considered a replacement for that same information appearing in the body of the text. As such, please ensure that all information found in a infobox is also contained in the main article.

AbbreviationsEdit

Abbreviations should be avoided whenever possible, but if they need to be used, the following are the abbreviations that Gagapedia has chosen to use. Please note that it is best to spell out words as best as possible.

Headlines and sectionsEdit

To create a new section in an article, surround the text with two or more == (equal signs). When you have the header, there is no blank line needed beneath the header.

The wiki engine will automatically create a table of contents based on the headers in an article.

In all cases, you should capitalize the first word and all proper nouns of the header, and leave all other words lowercase. The only place this does not apply is on songs articles. These pages have their own peculiar format with some letters capitalized. In addition, all words should be spelled out and not use numerals (such as "Love the Way You Lie, Part II" rather than "Love the Way You Lie, Part 2").

Avoid using links in headers. Depending on the browser's default settings, some users may not be able to see the links properly. It is much more useful to place the appropriate link in the first sentence after the header.

See alsoEdit

Paragraphs and formattingEdit

Inexperienced writers have a tendency towards "run on" paragraphs. Some of these may number dozens of lines and many column inches without a break. This makes the articles difficult to read as everything seems to flow together. It also makes it tough to quickly skim articles for data points.

A good paragraph (grammatically speaking) is two to five sentences in length on average. It covers one thought or idea or piece of information. Any time there is a change in the thought, idea, or piece of information, there should also be a paragraph change.

When formatting paragraphs, adding an empty line between paragraphs looks better in the articles than the traditional "paragraph indent" on the first line. It makes for a more definite "break point" visually, and allows the reader to more easily see that they are reading a new paragraph at that point.

As an example of what NOT to do, here's everything just typed as one big block (the way many articles tend to be done):

Inexperienced writers have a tendency towards "run on" paragraphs. Some of these may number dozens of lines and many column inches without a break. This makes the articles difficult to read as everything seems to flow together. It also makes it tough to quickly skim articles for data points. A good paragraph (grammatically speaking) is 2-5 sentences in length on average. It covers one thought or idea/piece of information. Any time there is a change in the thought/idea/piece of information, there should also be a paragraph change. When formatting paragraphs, adding an empty line between paragraphs looks better in the articles than the traditional "paragraph indent" on the first line. It makes for a more definite "break point" visually, and allows the reader to more easily see that they are reading a new paragraph at that point.

List styleEdit

Title styleEdit

Table stylesEdit

QuotationsEdit

When quoting a person in an article, and the quote is at least a full sentence, the quotation should be "italicized and quoted."

Rihanna said, "I want to give people a taste of the Caribbean, and show them the fun side of me.'."

However, if the quote is just a single word or a sentence fragment, it should not be italicized.

Rihanna said the song was her "best yet."

For quotes around titles, any punctuation that is not part of the title should follow the quote.

Drake first appeared in the music video "What's My Name?".

For uniformity and to avoid problems with the wiki software and the search utility, use straight quotation marks and apostrophes, and avoid curved marks such as the backtick or so-called "smart quotes". Punctuation marks should be placed inside of the quotation marks, unless the quotation marks surround a title (i.e., episode, comic, etc.), as shown in the third example above.

See alsoEdit

Background information and commentsEdit

On occasion, it is necessary or appropriate to include commentary about an unusual or contested point of information in an article. If there is a sufficient amount of information, it should be contained in a separate section, named:

==Background Information==

Alternatively, comments and information may be described in a short paragraph (no longer than three sentences).

CitationsEdit

See cite your sources for reference formatting.

"See also" and "Related topics"Edit

Informational references to related articles that have not been linked to from free links in the article itself are best handled by the "see also" header.

See also: the music video, the single release

(Note that you shouldn't indent the "see also" line in actual use.)

Alternatively, you can use a "Related topics" or "See also" section header to list the links in a more explicit fashion as a section of the article:

If an article consists of several sections and a "see also" refers to the entire article, making it a separate section helps emphasize that the links refer to the entire article, rather than simply the last section alone.

Other stylesEdit

There are undoubtedly styles that this tutorial does not cover. Although we try to keep this article simple, consider adding a new section to help new (and old!) readers out in creating styles for articles.

When all else fails, we recommend referring to the "official" resources for styles, such as The Chicago Manual of Style or Fowler's Modern English Usage.

Keep it simpleEdit

Above all else, you are encouraged to keep your articles simple! Don't try to get too fancy with your markup (like embedding tables within tables). The easier the markup is, the easier it will be for anyone to edit the article later on. Our first goal is to reliably and accurately display the information. The goal of wiki markup is to keep the articles simple and to emphasize the information as much as possible. We prefer content over form!

For this and other reasons, HTML markup should be avoided in most circumstances.

Spelling and style choicesEdit

Because Rihanna lives in America, Gagapedia has chosen to use American spellings of words rather than British spellings. Some examples of the common misspellings have been collected to help you out. Note that this applies to grammar and usage as well.

See alsoEdit

Before you start editing or creating new pages, we encourage you to read through and understand the following documents (if you haven't already):

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