According to the MLA stylesheet, writers should follow these guidelines in formatting their papers:

  • Type your paper on a computer and print it out on standard, white 8.5 x 11-inch paper.
  • Double-space the text of your paper, and use a readable font (e.g. Times New Roman) that is 12 pt. Do not use fonts like Jokerman or Comic Sans. These may look “cool” but they’re unprofessional and difficult to read. (Don’t argue this point.) (If you don’t know how to double-space, do a quick bit of web research on the topic.)
  • Make sure you have a single space after periods or other punctuation marks.
  • Make sure the margins of your document to 1 inch on all sides. (Use this resource if you don’t know how.)
  • Indent the first line of paragraphs one half inch from the left margin. Hitting the “Tab” key is the easiest way to do this.
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We welcome comments from readers, but like most websites, we have some guidelines for commenting. Above all, avoid comments that are filled with profanity and aim simply to insult. When we receive such comments, we publish them after redacting the profanity, and then we reply, usually with a critique of your use of language and sometimes with some grammar tips. In addition, we might share your email address publicly in the event that you leave a comment that does not conform to our comment policy (see above). We do this as a service: if you are leaving such comments, you likely need help with your writing (how to express anger without using profanity) and/or your social skills (knowing when a comment needs to be shared and when it needs to stay inside your own thoughts). We will sometimes publish your email in the response to your comment so that other readers can email you to offer their help as well. Some visitors might find that this makes them look foolish. Readers who wish to avoid looking foolish, therefore, should not submit such comments.

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