Citing Daily Writing Tips

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It is a source of satisfaction to me that the articles on the Daily Writing Tips site are often cited in bibliographies. Because the articles are accessed long after their original publication dates, I’m extremely grateful when readers browsing past articles call my attention to typos in any of the archived posts, so they may be corrected.

Occasionally, a student will ask me how to cite one of our articles. This is the format I’ve been recommending, based on my copy of the MLA Handbook (6th edition):

Maddox, Maeve. “When Words Collide.” DailyWritingTips.com/. 24 May 2011. Accessed January 3, 2013 – https://www.dailywritingtips.com/when-words-collide/

Nichol, Mark. “20 Types and Forms of Humor.” DailyWritingTips.com/. 24 November 2011. Accessed 25 July 2014 – https://www.dailywritingtips.com/20-types-and-forms-of-humor/

Since the publication of the 6th edition of the Handbook, MLA has lifted the necessity to include the URL. The reasoning is that Web addresses are not static, and documents sometimes appear in multiple locations. Thanks to Internet Search Engines, most readers can find electronic sources by means of title or author searches. An entry without the URL would look like this:

Maddox, Maeve. “When Words Collide.” DailyWritingTips.com/. 24 May 2011. Accessed January 3, 2013.

Note: Some instructors or editors still ask that the URL be included.

The “access date” is the date that the reader found the article on the Web. Because URLs change and documents vanish, the researcher would be wise to print the article or save it as a Web page.

Dates of publication do not appear with the individual DWT posts, but they can be found in the Archives. A quick way to find the date of the article you want is to go to the Archives page and type one or two of the words in the title in the browser “Find” feature.

For example, if you want to find the date of the article titled “Let the Word Do the Work,” click on the word Archives in the DWT menu at the top of the page. Then, under Edit in the browser, click on Find. In the box that appears, type the words “let the word.” Scroll down the page until you find the highlighted words in the title. This particular article appears under the date “May 2007”:

May 2007
31: Contractions
31: Audience is Everything
30: Let the Word Do the Work

The number in front of the title is the date of publication.

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2 thoughts on “Citing Daily Writing Tips”

  1. It seems profanity has evolved, in fact, passed me by. Are profane words sometimes, maybe through common usage, accepted as normal? Examples? I’m thinking of the f-bomb. Last night, I watched “The Wolf of Wall Street,” starring Leonardo DiCaprio. Every other word was f-bomb this, f-bomb that. I live on an island shared by three cultures. In one, it’s as if its members wear a badge: “I’m an f-bomber.” Kids, too. Especiallly the kids.
    Fuck it. I vote “yes” for normalcy.

  2. In this “information age,” thanks for the pointers on how to cite internet sources. Regarding the best way to find the publication date of DWT posts, the Archives page may not always be the first one to come up If the article is found from a search engine. So, another clue to the actual publication date of a particular post probably would be reflected in the date of the oldest comment. Then the publication date could be confirmed through the Archives page. Of course, at least one comment would be needed as a reference, and there is a chance that the oldest comment actually might not have been made on the day of publication. There are very few instances where everyone had nothing to say!

    I’m certain I found DWT a number of years ago through a search engine in response to a writing question, and have been a daily reader (and occasional commenter) ever since!

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