[Date (January 1, 2012)]
Got a paper to write? Here’s a tip: don’t worry about the formatting, JUST WRITE. Besides, this MLA template for Word has the formatting down for you. Just replace everything in brackets with your information (remember the heading!) and you’re good to go. And, of course, replace this stuff with your content. But read this first! There’s some really important info here.
Do yourself a favor and save this template to your computer in a place where you’ll remember it. There are bunch of little nuances in MLA that are really easy to miss – the heading, the spacing, the date format, and those random rules that seem to exist only to annoy you… stop re-writing it each time you go to write a paper, and just whip out this handy template! Wasn’t that easy?
By the way, here’s a look at some of the stuff people get wrong a lot. First, the heading at the top right corner of each page. Remove the entire thing if your paper is just one page long; some teachers, though, tell you to just remove the page number. Next come inline citations. You want to “write them in this format, with the period way at the end, assuming you got this from the 5th page of someone’s essay” (Someone 5). Also, if someone includes some random tangent in their quote, you can cut out the junk using ellipses. “I’ve got logorrhea, meaning I tend to ramble on incoherently a lot . . . Now back to the main topic.” Notice that there are spaces in between each ellipsis (yes, that’s the singular form), before the ellipses, and after them. Strange, I know. But it gets weirder. What if you want to cite a really long bit of text (4 lines or more)? Take a look.
Welcome to long-quote land! Notice that the formatting here is the same as it is everywhere else – except every paragraph is indented twice as much (one inch) as usual paragraphs. What I’d recommend you do is type your long quote normally (like a normal paragraph), then...