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Submissions Guidelines

Contributor guidelines

Prospective writers are encouraged to contact the editor Jeremy Gilbert to discuss their ideas. Articles should be emailed to the editor – they will be anonymously refereed by a member of the New Formations advisory board. The editor welcomes proposals from those wishing to ‘guest-edit’ an issue on a special theme.

Prospective reviewers should contact reviews editor Georgina Colby.


It will be assumed that authors will keep a copy. Authors should email their paper to:
Jeremy Gilbert, Editor, New Formations.


Submissions of a paper to new formations will be taken to imply that it presents original, unpublished work not under consideration for publication elsewhere. Authors will be asked to give such an undertaking when issued with a contract by the Publisher (see below). By submitting a manuscript the author agrees that he or she is granting the Publisher for a fixed term the exclusive right to reproduce and distribute the paper including reprints, photographic reproductions, microfilm or any other reproduction of a similar nature, and translations. He or she will not be required to assign the copyright.


Submissions should sent as a word document. Articles should normally be in English and of a maximum length of 8000 words. Tables or figures should be included as separate files; with the desired position in the text indicated by a marginal note.


Photographs should be high contrast black and white glossy prints. Permission to reproduce them must be obtained by authors prior to submission, and any acknowledgements should be included in the captions (or as captions).

References and Notes

For style please see below.

The layout of the journal means that notes appear down the side of the page and for this reason authors are asked to keep notes to a minimum and wherever possible (for the sake of economy and clarity) to integrate them into the main body of the text.

Articles should be submitted with notes given as numbered endnotes; these will be converted to marginal notes on proof. Manuscripts submitted with a ‘non-new formations-style’ (e.g. Harvard System) or inconsistent system will be returned for amendment by the author.


Page proofs will be sent for correction to each author.  Please note that the difficulty and expense involved in making amendments at page proof stage make it essential that authors regard their submitted typescripts as fair copies. Any alterations (other than corrections to literals and typographical errors) cannot be made at proof stage. Authors are requested to check and return proofs to the editor, together with a signed copy of their contract, as promptly as possible.

Complimentary Copies and Offprints

Every contributor will naturally receive a pdf of the issue to which he or she has contributed, and may purchase further copies (and back numbers) on trade terms.

Right of Rejection

The Editor reserves the right to reject submitted material at any time up to the issuing of a contract to the author.

Style Guide

  • Generally consistency is all-important, but please follow these rules.
  • Extracts (quotations of 60 words or more): indent without quotation marks, with a line space above and below, giving reference by superscript numeral and endnote.
  • Italics: for names of ships, play titles, newspapers (only The Times and The Economist have ‘The’ as part of title), paintings, film titles, books, magazines, journals, TV programme names. Poem, essay and short story titles in roman and single quotes.
  • Quotations (less than 60 words): single quote marks, but double for quotation within quotation. Square brackets for author/editor’s insertion of words not in the original, e.g. ‘in many respects [hers is an] exemplary biography’.  All signs of punctuation used with words in quotation marks must be placed according to sense, as in the following examples:

‘Why does he use the word “poison”?’

But I boldly cried out, ‘Woe unto this city!’

Alas, how few of them can say, ‘I have striven to the very utmost’!

  • S/Z: ‘s’ spellings preferred (e.g. organise, apologise, etc.)
  • Dashes: spaced ‘en’ rules – to be typed thus.
  • Ellipses: three dots with spaces on either side thus … even if a sentence ends or starts with one.  Omit all other punctuation even if, for example, a sentence ends before the ellipse.
  • Paragraphs: indicate by double hard return. No indent.
  • Hyphens: maintain consistency (keep list if in doubt): compound nouns, e.g. film-maker (but not established compounds, e.g. soundtrack, comeback, breakdown etc.); double adjectives, e.g. well-timed (but not adverb and adjective, e.g. widely known); clashing vowels, e.g. co-operate, re-introduce (but not rewrite, rethink etc.); words with two meanings (e.g. recreation and re-creation); adjectival phrases, e.g. middle-class (but not the noun, e.g. the working class); hyphenate five-year-old, but not no one.
  • Foreign words/phrases: check with Oxford Dictionary for Writers and Editors for accents and italicization. Roman only for words/phrases in common usage, e.g. rendezvous, role, regime (note: no accents).
  • Contractions: omit full point of contractions (which end in last letter of word), e.g. Dr, Mr, Mrs, St, edn, eds, Ltd; and after metric units (preferred to Imperial measures, but please be consistent), e.g. cm, m, km, kg, etc. No full point for etc if followed by other punctuation.
  • Abbreviations: end with full points (since truncated), e.g. p.m., ed., vol., no., etc. And for initials of people, e.g. R. A. Butler, Edward W. Said, etc. No full points with initials for organizations etc, e.g. RAC, BBC, SWP, HMSO, USA, etc.
  • Dates: use 1950s, not fifties, or ’50s or 1950’s. Use 1984, not ‘84; and use 1914-18, unless 1899-1902. For complete dates, give thus: 25 June 1992 (not 25th June 1992, or June 25, 1992). Spell out nineteenth century, not 19th century (and note hyphenation of adjectival usage, e.g. a nineteenth-century tradition).
  • Numbers: spell out to 100 (i.e. eighty-nine), then use numerals (i.e. 253). Always spell out ages of people and amounts (e.g. six bottles, ten years, four days etc.) The exceptions are measurements (see below) and millions/billions, i.e. £7.8 million. Thousands: use comma only in five- or six-figure numbers, i.e. 4000, but 45,000.
  • Measurements: use figures (numerals), e.g. 8 km, 15 hectares, etc. Film/camera lens measurements thus, 16mm, 35mm (closed up as shown).
  • Percentages: use figures, and spell out per cent (two words) (e.g. 20 per cent).
  • Notes and References: these are now displayed as marginal notes in new formations for ease of reference. Check that they are complete and corresponding correctly to superscript numerals in text, placed outside punctuation: e.g. … as Fredric Jameson notes.17 When giving references follow this style: author’s (or editor’s) surname (with first name preferably, or initial[s]), title (italicized) and subtitle, place, publisher, date, e.g.


Fredric Jameson, Political Unconscious, London, Methuen,1981, pp206-280.

Dorothy Richardson, Pilgrimage, Vol. 3, London, Virago, 979, p51.

Edited collections:

Stuart Hall and Martin Jacques (eds), The Politics of Thatcherism, London, Lawrence and Wishart, 1983.

Chapters in books:

Judith Butler, ‘Burning Acts: Injurious Speech’, in A. Parker and E. Kosofsky Sedgewick (eds), Performativity and Performance, New York, Routledge, 1995, pp197-227.


Richard Menke, ‘Telegraphic Realism: Henry James’s In the Cage’, PMLA, 115, 5 (2000), 975-90.

Other periodicals:

Alex Hamilton, ‘Clogs by the Aga’, Guardian, 11 January 1994, p7.

  • Capitalisation: check with Oxford Dictionary for Writers and Editors for capitalisation of proper names etc. Do not normally capitalise socialism, communism, fascism, the left, the right, etc. For chapter/section headings use upper case, e.g. The End of Fordism and Organised Capitalism.

Book Reviews

Books for review should be sent to Georgina Colby, Department of English, Linguistics and Cultural Studies, University of Westminster, 32-38 Wells St, London W1T 3UW.

Reviewers should note the following variations from the main style guidelines:

  • Manuscripts: The maximum length for book reviews is usually 2000 words. new formations also carries short reviews ‘booknotes’ of 300-400 words.
  • Reference and Notes: Footnotes should be kept to an absolute minimum. Page references to the book(s) reviewed should be incorporated in the text (e.g. ‘as the author herself claims (p23) … ‘). References to other works requiring footnotes should be avoided where possible.
  • Book Title: Publication details of books under review should include the number of pages and the price of paper and cloth editions where appropriate, e.g. Robert Markley (ed), Virtual Realities and their Discontents, Baltimore, John Hopkins University Press, 1996, 171pp; £12.50 paperback, £32 cloth.

Instructions for Authors sending articles digitally:

1.Please use word; email files as rtf files.

2.Please follow the style sheet

3.Always label files clearly and obviously –eg with your surname and (abbreviated if necessary) title.

4.Make sure you always save corrections and always send us the most recent version. It is preferable to delete earlier versions, or at least to date them. If we receive hard copy which does not match the digital version, we will assume the digital version is the correct one. We will charge for our time if it turns out that we have been sent the wrong disc.

5.Put about 30-50 kilobytes (about 20 pages/one essay) on each file.

6.Keep an up-to-date backup of everything.

Keying guidelines

1.Keep layout simple, but you can put in italics, bold, etc – these will transfer if you are going from word to rtf. Do not use underline.

2.Don’t indent for paras – use double return.

3.Don’t use different fonts, stick with Times New Roman all the way.

4.Use correct character – e.g. don’t type 0 (number) for O (letter) or I (letter) for 1 (number).

5.Only leave a single space after punctuation.

6.Don’t hit return key at the end of lines, let the word processor do the lines. Don’t hyphenate words that occur at the end of lines because the hyphens will fall in the wrong place in the set copy.

7.Don’t justify.

8.Try to be consistent in your spelling, style, etc. That way, any changes can be made globally.

Basic checks

1.Do a spell check but not a grammar check (Word’s grammar is not very good). Make sure your spellcheck language is English (British). Always check Word’s suggestions, they are not always right.

2.Do a global search and replace for double spaces. Also do a global check for inverted commas, which often change format when transferring from one programme to another. Do a check for dashes which should be thus – not – thus. But, contrastingly, hyphens should be thus – not thus –.

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