The Journal of the Comics Studies Society


The Journal of the Comics Studies Society

Submit to Inks: The Journal of the Comics Studies Society
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Style Sheet

General Guidelines for Submissions

Submissions are evaluated using a blind peer review process. Inks uses a house style based on the 17th edition of The Chicago Manual of Style (endnotes). Manuscripts should generally be limited to roughly 7000-8000 words and should be submitted via Submittable (see the button at the top of the page), with 12-point font and double‑spacing throughout, including notes, and with one-inch margins with left margin justification only. After manuscripts have been accepted for publication, revisions should also be submitted as an attachment in Microsoft Word.

Copyrighted Material:

Authors are responsible for obtaining worldwide print and digital permissions from and paying any required fees to copyright holders to use material (e.g., long quotations or quotations that constitute a sizable proportion of a complete work, tables, photographs) that has been published and remains under copyright. Select reproduction of a small portion of a longer sequential work may fall under fair-use as quotation. Cover images are never covered by fair-use. Many, but not all, pre-1923 works are public domain. The manuscript cannot go to press without all signed permissions in hand, as well as a signed copy of the contributor’s agreement that will be issued by the Ohio State University Press.


Xeroxes will not be accepted. Digital photographs submitted with the final draft must be of professional quality (scanned at 300 dpi or above). Images should be submitted as .tiff files, with notations on the files. If there is any potential for doubt, provide separate instructions indicating “top” of image. Please provide captions for the images at end of document file, and indicate approximately where the images should be placed in the text, with the following annotation: < Figure 1 here >. Keep in mind that final placement of the image will be determined by the typesetter during production.

Biographical Statement:

After an essay has been accepted for publication, the author should submit a 2–3 sentence biographical statement to accompany the article. Authors should include their full titles, such as “John Doe is Associate Professor of English at The Ohio State University,” and any publications/accomplishments/other information they wish to tell Inks readers.

Style Guidelines


Check all quotations against originals; such cite checking is the responsibility of the author. In all cases, ask whether quotations are necessary, paraphrasable, or able to be deleted. Quotations of fewer than eight lines are run into the text. Quotations of eight lines or more are indented five spaces from the left margin and double‑spaced; such quotations should be used only when absolutely necessary. No quotation marks are needed in block quotes or epigraphs, unless dialogue is included within the selection. Place parenthetical cites for a block prose quotation after the closing punctuation.

For extracts of poetry, use a hard return at the end of each line. Type poetry extracts with line breaks and stanza indents exactly as they occur in the original poem. If special formatting is required, submit a photocopy of this poem in published form for the compositor to consult. For short poetry quotations (2−3 lines) run into the text, use a slash with a space on either side to indicate line breaks. Place parenthetical cites for a block poetry quotation one line below it.

Ellipses and brackets that were part of the original quotation should preserve the integrity of the original. In general, do not use ellipses before or after a run-in quotation; before a block quotation; or after a block quotation ending with a grammatically complete sentence. Three dots should be used to indicate an omission within a quoted sentence or part of a sentence; replace “. . .” with “…”. Square brackets with ellipses should be avoided. Only use end-of-sentence ellipses when ellipses are part of original quotation or as specified in 13.52 , CMS 17ed.

Italicize “sic” and use it only when necessary.

Endnotes and Citations

Inks uses endnotes (double-spaced) for all citations, using Microsoft Word’s endnote feature. Please do not type notes separately. No “Works Cited” list will be included; all bibliographic information must be contained in endnotes. Reserve parenthetical citations only for frequently cited references to a central text discussed in the essay; such texts should first be cited in a note with the stipulation that further citations will be given in the text. We do not use ibid for repeated references in endnotes; instead, use a short title format for all endnotes after the first reference. Do not use abbreviations in lieu of the short title format. As a rule, superscript note numbers in the body of the essay should always be at the end of a sentence; avoid having multiple notes in the same sentence. As a rule, discursive information belongs in the text, not in the endnotes.

Unnumbered note. The first, unnumbered note, if desired, can be keyboarded in the file as a normal text paragraph, a few lines below your concluding sentence, but before the start of numbered endnotes. Such a note can express gratitude to others for helpful discussion or any other general explanations about the article.

Typical Citations for Endnotes:


Bradford W. Wright, Comic Book Nation: The Transformation of Youth Culture in America (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003), 72.

Robert Shackleton, The Story of Harper’s Magazine 1850−1917 (New York: Harper & Brothers Publishers, 1917).

Notes: “University” and “Press” are always spelled out. State abbreviations are not necessary unless readers would not readily recognize the place of publication, in which case utilize modern postal abbreviations (i.e., MA for Massachusetts, etc.). In publication information, cite only first city when multiple cities are listed on title page.

For nineteenth-century publications, represent publisher names with “& Co.” where appropriate. For modern, secondary publications, use only the company name, dropping, e.g., “and Company.” So, in the first case, Houghton, Mifflin & Co.; in the second, Houghton Mifflin.

Edited book
Terrence R. Wandtke, The Amazing Transforming Superhero! Essays on the Revision of Characters in Comic Books, Film and Television (Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2007). 

Author with Editor or Translator

Tarpé Mills, Miss Fury Sensational Sundays: 1941−1944, ed. Trina Robbins (San Diego: IDW, 2013).

Jean-Paul Gabilliet, Of Comics and Men: A Cultural History of American Comic Books, trans. Bart Beaty and Nick Nguyen (Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2009), 63.

Chapter of book or article in a Collection of Essays
David Ogilvy, “The Creative Chef,” in The Creative Organization, ed. Gary A. Steiner (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1965), 199–213.

Note: in page numbers over 109, drop the second hundreds digit if it is the same as the first, e.g., 122–32, but 184–202. However, 100–109, 200–209, etc. should appear in full.

Articles in Periodical Journals
Cartright C. Bellworthy, “Reform of Congressional Renumeration,” Political Review 7.6 (1990): 87−101.

Patricia A. Cooper, “What Ever Happened to Adolph Strasser?” Labor History 20 (Summer 1979): 17−30.

Samuel Johannsen, “The Great Migration and Periodical Ritual,” Periodical Philology 7 (1980): 1–22.

Notes: CMOS distinguishes popular and academic journals; Inks applies this distinction only to twentieth-century periodicals. All eighteenth- and nineteenth-century periodicals should be treated as journals. Do not use initials to replace authors’ first names unless authors routinely published their works under initials rather than full first names. For journals, include issue number, season, and/or month of publication only if journal begins pagination at number one with every issue. When including volume and issue numbers, separate volume and issue number with a period.

Articles in Newspapers
“The Pay of Authors,” New York Tribune, February 5, 1845.

Note: Cite the newspaper issue by a date separated by commas. No page numbers.

Serial Comic Book

Ms. Marvel #1 (Marvel Comics, 1977)

Ms. Marvel Vol. 3 #1 (Marvel Comics, 2014)

Notes: for original or first series, no need to include volume number; for citation from a comic (as in the above example) that has been renumbered cite wherever possible the series number as "Vol. #".

Manuscript or archive collections
should be cited according to the owning library’s guidelines.

Jennifer Burek Pierce, “Women’s Rhetorical Activities After Suffrage: Advocacy for the Maternity and Infancy Act of 1921” (PhD diss., Indiana University, 1999).

Internet sites
“Archie Goodwin,” Lambiek Comiclopedia, last updated August 22, 2008,

Tom Spurgeon, “Has The Comics Industry Really Done All That Well During Legitimate Recessions?,” The Comics Reporter, July 25, 2008,

Notes: For standard webpage include the title or a brief description of the page, the author of the content (if named) and/or owner or sponsor of the site, and a URL. Always include a publication date or date of revision if available; if no such date is available include an access date. For blogs, include name of author, title of entry, name of blog, date of posting and url.

Additional Stylistic & Formatting Preferences:

  • Dates: All dates follow “American” style (i.e., “May 2, 1966”).
  • “Etc.” and contractions should be avoided.
  • Use the italics feature in Word; avoid using underline and do not use bold except for section titles
  • Following CMOS style, proper names that are commonly recognized as initials (LBJ, JFK, FDR) can stand as such. “US” is acceptable in adjectival form; when used as a noun, spell it out: “United States.” In general, however, abbreviations should be avoided.
  • Spell out abbreviations for dates (nineteenth century) and money (five dollars), with the exception of uneven dollar amounts or amounts over ten dollars ($5.62 or $137).
  • Em-dashes as — (not double dashes or en-dashes)
  • Use smart quotes throughout
  • Single space after end punctuation.
  • Use Oxford commas


Contributors will be sent a copy of the copyedited manuscript and will have until the deadline given to respond to changes and queries and communicate any final revisions to the associate editor. “Rewriting” at the proof stage will not be acceptable. For this reason, great care must be taken in ensuring accuracy and felicity of style in the preparation of the manuscript prior to final submission. Two to three weeks are allotted for author review of editing and a similar amount of time for reviewing page proofs; such a time limit is important to keeping the publication on schedule.

last updated: September 22, 2018

Submit to Inks: The Journal of the Comics Studies Society