How to format your references using the Poetics citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Poetics. For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteDownload the output style file
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
McCave, I. N. (2002). Paleoclimate. A poisoned chalice? Science (New York, N.Y.), 298(5596), 1186–1187.
A journal article with 2 authors
Gurnett, D. A., & Kurth, W. S. (2005). Electron plasma oscillations upstream of the solar wind termination shock. Science (New York, N.Y.), 309(5743), 2025–2027.
A journal article with 3 authors
Killgore, W. D. S., Olson, E. A., & Weber, M. (2013). Physical exercise habits correlate with gray matter volume of the hippocampus in healthy adult humans. Scientific Reports, 3, 3457.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Karnoub, A. E., Dash, A. B., Vo, A. P., Sullivan, A., Brooks, M. W., Bell, G. W., Richardson, A. L., Polyak, K., Tubo, R., & Weinberg, R. A. (2007). Mesenchymal stem cells within tumour stroma promote breast cancer metastasis. Nature, 449(7162), 557–563.

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
Hersent, O., Petit, J.-P., & Gurle, D. (2005). Beyond VoIP Protocols. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Cavallini, F. (2013). Quasi-Geostrophic Theory of Oceans and Atmosphere: Topics in the Dynamics and Thermodynamics of the Fluid Earth (F. Crisciani, Ed.; Vol. 45). Springer Netherlands.
A chapter in an edited book
Bavry, A. A., & Kumbhani, D. J. (2012). Peripheral interventions. In D. J. Kumbhani (Ed.), Indications and techniques of percutaneous procedures: Coronary, peripheral, and structural heart disease (pp. 29–60). Springer Healthcare Ltd.

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for Poetics.

Blog post
Carpineti, A. (2015, November 18). Astronomers Use Star Pulsation To Estimate Galaxy Age. IFLScience; IFLScience.


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
Government Accountability Office. (1985). Guarantee Agency Funding, Operations, and Reserves Under the Guaranteed Student Loan Program (No. 127236). U.S. Government Printing Office.

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Daly, K. M. (2008). Cinema 3.0: How digital and computer technologies are changing cinema [Doctoral dissertation]. Columbia University.

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
Ryerson, J. (2017, May 4). University Presses. New York Times, BR31.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by name and year in parentheses:

This sentence cites one reference (McCave, 2002).
This sentence cites two references (Gurnett & Kurth, 2005; McCave, 2002).

Here are examples of in-text citations with multiple authors:

  • Two authors: (Gurnett & Kurth, 2005)
  • Three authors: (Killgore et al., 2013)
  • 6 or more authors: (Karnoub et al., 2007)

About the journal

Full journal titlePoetics
AbbreviationPoetics (Amst.)
ISSN (print)0304-422X
ScopeLanguage and Linguistics
Literature and Literary Theory
Linguistics and Language

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