CORRECTION: WRITING AND WRITERS: STYLE AND WRITING MANUALS : UNITED STATES: GOVERNMENT: Style Manual: An Official Guide to the Form and Style of Federal Government Printing

David P. Dillard






Style Manual: An Official Guide to the Form and Style
of Federal Government Printing



Style Manual: An Official Guide to the Form and Style
of Federal Government Printing GPO-STYLEMANUAL-2008.pdf


A shorter URL for the above link:






Table of Contents


About This Manual

GPO's Online Initiatives

1. Advice to Authors and Editors

2. General Instructions

3. Capitalization Rules

4. Capitalization Examples

5. Spelling

6. Compounding Rules

7. Compounding Examples

8. Punctuation

9. Abbreviations and Letter Symbols

Standard word abbreviations

Standard letter symbols for units of measure

Standard Latin abbreviations

Information technology acronyms and Initialisms

10. Signs and Symbols

11. Italic

12. Numerals

13. Tabular Work

14. Leaderwork

15. Footnotes, Indexes, Contents, and Outlines

16. Datelines, Addresses, and Signatures

17. Useful Tables

U.S. Presidents and Vice Presidents

Most Populous U.S. Cities by State

Principal Foreign Countries

Demonyms: Names of Nationalities


Metric and U.S. Measures

Common Measures and Th eir Metric Equivalents

Measurement Conversion

18. Geologic Terms and Geographic Divisions

19. Congressional Record

Congressional Record Index

20. Reports and Hearings




1. Advice to Authors and Editors

The GPO Style Manual is intended to facilitate Government printing. Careful observance of the following suggestions will aid in expediting your publication and also reduce printing costs.

1.1. Making changes after submission of copy delays the production of the publication and adds to the expense of the work; therefore, copy must be carefully edited before being submitted to the Government Printing Office.

1.2. Legible copy, not faint reproductions, must be furnished.

1.3. Copy should be on one side only with each sheet numbered consecutively. If both sides of copy are to be used, a duplicate set of copy must be furnished.

1.4. To avoid unnecessary expense, it is advisable to have each page begin with a new paragraph.

1.5. Proper names, signatures, fi gures, foreign words, and technical terms should be written plainly.

1.6. Chemical symbols, such as Al, Cl, Tl are sometimes mistaken for A1, C1, T1. Editors must indicate whether the second character is a letter or a figure.

1.7. Footnote reference marks in text and tables should be arranged consecutively from left to right across each page of copy.

1.8. Photographs, drawings, and legends being used for illustrations should be placed in the manuscript where they are to appear in the publication. Th ey should be on individual sheets, as they are handled separately during typesetting.

1.9. If a publication is composed of several parts, a scheme of the desired arrangement must accompany the fi rst installment of copy.

1.10. To reduce the possibility of costly blank pages, avoid use of new odd pages and half titles whenever possible. Generally these refinements should be limited to quality bookwork.

1.11. Samples should be furnished if possible. They should be plainly marked showing the desired type, size of type page, illustrations if any, paper, trim, lettering, and binding.

1.12. In looseleaf or perforated-on-fold work, indicate folio sequence, including blank pages, by circling in blue. Begin with first text page (title). Do not folio separate covers or dividers.

1.13. Indicate on copy if separate or self-cover. When reverse printing in whole or in part is required, indicate if solid or tone.

1.14. Avoid use of oversize fold-ins wherever possible. This can be done by splitting a would-be fold-in and arranging the material to appear as facing pages in the text. Where fold-ins are numerous and cannot be split, consideration should be given to folding and inserting these into an envelope pasted to the inside back cover.

1.15. Every effort should be made to keep complete jobs of over 4 pages to signatures (folded units) of 8, 12, 16, 24, or 32 pages. Where possible, avoid having more than two blank pages at the end.

1.16. Indicate alternative choice of paper on the requisition. Where possible,confine choice of paper to general use items carried in inventory as shown in the GPO Paper Catalog.

1.17. If nonstandard trim sizes and/or type areas are used, indicate head and back margins. Otherwise, GPO will determine the margins.

1.18. Customers should submit copy for running heads and indicate the numbering sequence for folios, including the preliminary pages.

1.19. Corrections should be made on first proofs returned, as later proofs are intended for verification only. All corrections must be indicated on the R (revise) set of proofs, and only that set should be returned to GPO.

1.20. Corrections should be marked in the margins of a proof opposite the indicated errors, not by writing over the print or between the lines. All queries on proofs must be answered

1.21. Th e following GPO publications relate to material included in this Manual. Th ey may be purchased from the Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing Offi ce, Washington, DC 20402. Word Division: Supplement to the United States Government


Printing Office Style Manual


This publication serves as a quick reference guide for finding correct word divisions, as well as a spelling and pronunciation guide. In addition to the list of words with divisions, it also contains wordbreak rules and line-ending rules. Prepared especially for GPO printers and proofreaders, this supplement is equally useful for keyboarding. 1987.


Government Paper Specifications


The purpose of these standards is to achieve compliance with relevant statutes regarding printing papers; address environmental, workplace safety, and paper longevity issues; and achieve maximum savings in the Governments paper purchases. 2008.


GPO Paper Samples


This publication is a supplement to Government Paper Specification Standards. It includes samples of papers used by GPO. Used as a planning aid and guide in selecting an adequate grade, weight, and color of paper for a job of printing. 2008.


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David Dillard
Temple University
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