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  1. dillseed
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    dillseed Active Member

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    CMOS -- Hyphens Throughout?

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by dillseed, May 3, 2015.

    The following style is for nonfiction.
    --------
    CMOS said to me in an email reply, "Please see CMOS 6.80; an en dash is used to prevent confusion; it’s a style choice, not a rule that cannot be broken. None of your phrases are enhanced by an en dash. It doesn’t improve comprehension, and the mixture of hyphens and en dashes simply looks like bad typesetting. We do not endorse ungainly modifier strings like the ones in your examples, but if you are forced to use them, just use hyphens:
    (e.g. $3-$5-million-a-year contract, not a
    $3–$5-million-a-year contract)."
    -----

    That said, do all of the following examples look correct based on Chicago's guidance above?

    25-30-year mortgage
    30-40-year-old period
    45-50-year-old patients
    every single 65-70-year-old

    1-2-pound weight loss
    10-20-mile hike
    3-5-gallon container
    10-20-liter batch of fresh agave juice
    30-40-kilogram loads

    20-30-minute conferences
    $10-$20-million-a-year contract
    $40,000-$50,000-per-year joint income
    20-40%-a-year increase

    20-$25-a-month service fees
    a $10-$15-per-month balance
    an $85-$90-a-week deduction
    a $30-$35-million-plus deal

    25-30-, 35-40-, and 45-55-year-old men

    25-30-, 35-40-, and 45-55-year-olds

    Please, no suggested recasts.

    Thank you.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2015
  2. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    I can only suggest recasts. Some of those are awkward as hell.

    If you don't want the suggested changes? I don't know. CMOS themselves have said they don't endorse this kind of usage, so it seems strange to try to apply CMOS standards to it.
     
  3. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    They all look correct to me. The only thing that I'll point out is that you're inconsistent with the usage of dollar signs. For example, you have
    In the first example, you don't have the dollar sign for the first number, though I think it should be there. The same goes for the percent sign in the example right above this one.
     
  4. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I'm confused, it seems simple enough, use hyphens, not en or em dashes when you use a string of hyphenated adjectives.

    Personally, I don't use the hyphen after the number spread. The only time I use a string of hyphenated words is in some adjectival clauses. I've also used single quotes to set an adjectival clause apart.

    He was in his I-love-board-games mode.
    He was in his 'I love board games' mode.
    10–20 mile hike
    hyphen: -
    en dash: –
    em dash: —

    CMOS: Hyphens, en dashes and em dashes

    I've never bothered with en dashes but I do use em dashes for interrupted speech or actions in my fiction.
     
  5. dillseed
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    dillseed Active Member

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    Like this, thirdwind?

    20%-40%-a-year increase

    I typo'd by omitting the dollar sign in the other example.
     
  6. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    Yes. I think that's right, though I could be wrong.
     
  7. dillseed
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    dillseed Active Member

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    Thank you both.

    Respectfully,

    Dillseed
     

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