How to use poems, quotes and phrases in papers, blog posts and articles

JOURNAL writingIf you’re an aspiring writer or student, you will benefit from learning how to use poems, quotes and phrases in papers, blogs and articles. Read on…

I’ve been writing inspiring books and personal development blog posts for a few decades now. After authoring a bunch of bestselling books, I personally know that writing can be a lot of fun, but also very challenging. After all, as a writer, you’re supposed to know how to deal with language, grammar, punctuation – which can be complicated at times.

Plus, if you’re a student writing a paper, then you face even more writing challenges. For example, you might need to quote something in your paper – in the right manner. Sometimes students feel unsure about how to deal with using poems, quotes and phrases in their writing. As a result, they seek  help from services where they can have a professional paper writer handle how to deal with poems. Remember: It’s always good to use poems, quotes and phrases in papers. They can work as persuasive arguments, offer thoughtful reflection, or even share helpful contrasting opinions.

In case you don’t know how to cite a poem, quote or phrase appropriately, no worries! I’m here to help!

As you might know, I am the founder of groundbreaking video course called The Anxiety Cure.

I love sharing insights and strategies to help people to reduce stress so they can live their highest potential lives.

With this in mind I put together this short guide on how to use poems, quotes and phrases in papers, blog posts and articles.

MLA and poems

While writing, more and more people prefer MLA style for appropriate formatting of the document.

What is MLA format and why does it matter?

MLA stands for Modern Language Association.  The Modern Language Association publishes a handbook, called The Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, which recommend the preferred format and style of papers.

They also have certain suggestions for the best way to cite poems.

As a rule, the way of dealing with poems depends on the length of the phrase.

  • If the poem is not more than 3 lines, it’s called a short phrase.
  • And if the poem is longer than that – it is called a long phrase.

MLA and a short phrase

If you start with a short phrase from a poem, that is not longer than three lines, then there is no need to begin a citation from a new line.

  • You should also keep in mind that that quotation marks are supposed to be used.
  • Plus, you should not forget about capital letters when a new line starts.

MLA and long phrases

Don’t forget that a long phrase is in case there are more than three lines present in it.  It has a bit of other formatting rules than the previous one and should be paid attention to.

To begin with, there is a requirement to start your phrase from a new line if we compare it with a short version where we don’t need to do it. Remember that it is a block quote, so marks are not used. But still, all punctuation should be the same.

How can you use poems, phrases and quotes in a title?

It does not matter how exactly you format the poem, phrase or quote. But it is always important to mention the name of the author appropriately. So you may ask where to mention the author together with the name?

The answer is simple.

  • Mention the name of the author as close to the poem, quote or phrase as quickly as possible. 

APA and phrases, quotes and poems

First, I want to share what APA means.

APA is the style of documentation of sources used by the American Psychological Association.

It’s usually used in…

  • social sciences
  • psychology
  • anthropology
  • sociology,
  • education

According to APA recommendations, your quotation should be no longer than forty words. And APA requires quotation marks and beautifully organized lines. There is no need to begin a quotation of a short form to start with a new line. When a phrase we use is more than forty words, it is time for block citations. This means the writer is not supposed to use quotation marks at all. But such a thing should start from the new line. When you include something from a book, don’t forget to mention all necessary details about the author and the publication with all names and dates.

Useful pieces of advice on how to work with quotations

Begin your work smartly and logically. Pause and consider the poem, quote or phrase. Think about how you’d explain it to an acquaintance and how you’d include a credit to the author. Make sure you understand everything, and each and every line is clear for you. After reading everything more than once, it will be easier for you to choose those things you want to quote.

Before you include poems, quotes or phrases in your writing, think of reasons to include them.

Don’t overdo it.

Be sure to clarify to your reader why you are including the poem, quote or phrase.

Instead of simple quotations, you can just rewrite necessary concepts or points of view. But when citing a poem word by word, try not to use all of the poem. Instead, simply choose only those lines that really matter most. The middle part is not used as a rule. Usually the most attention is paid to the ending.

Finally, my last piece of writing advice:

Before handing in your work, read your writing twice or more to make sure everything is perfect.

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