Writing Tip: En Dashes

En dashes are a rare punctuation mark—while hyphens and em dashes are common, en dashes primarily come into play in two specific scenarios:

1. To indicate a range

An en dash can indicate “from this to that”—number ranges, date ranges, and any other range that’s from one thing to another:

  • The passage contained verses 15–20.
  • The conference will be held April 10–15.
  • They took the Bellingham–Seattle train.
  • They have a love–hate relationship.

Please note that the dash implies “from this to that”; saying “from April 10–15” is redundant.

  • Incorrect: The conference will be held from April 10–15.
  • Correct: The conference will be held April 10–15.

2. To connect words

We use hyphens to connect compound adjectives, like “brand-new software.” This connects one word (“brand”) to one word (“new”).

But when we want to connect one word to multiple words, we use an en dash. The en dash will take place of the hyphen, indicating that you’re not just connecting one word to another. This is often seen in proper nouns or used with prefixes:

  • They created new Logos Bible Software–branded tools.
  • They began an anti–human trafficking movement.

The en dash avoids confusion—for example, in the case of “anti–human trafficking,” a hyphen would be describing the trafficking as “anti-human,” which has a very different meaning!

To create an en dash on your keyboard, use Alt + 0150 on a PC or Option + hyphen on a Mac.

Writing Tip: Biblical Books & Abbreviations

When referring to a biblical book in running text, spell out the name of the book and lowercase the word “book”: We studied the book of Revelation. The sermon covered the book of Ruth. One exception is for Gospels: if you’re referring to a specific Gospel, capitalize the word “Gospel” (alternatively, using the term “gospel” […]

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Writing Tip: Common Branded Terms

We deal with so many lines of business, brands, and projects on a daily basis—and each has its own set of terms that we use to brand its features. To keep our communications consistent, we’ve created a list of branded terms. Terms should always be written as they appear on this list (including capitalization, italics, […]

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Writing Tip: Possessives Ending in “S”

Which is it—Jesus’s disciples or Jesus’ disciples? It depends on who you ask, but in our style guide, we just use the apostrophe (which is a departure from the Chicago Manual of Style). Logos’ training seminar The disciples’ feet This goes for plurals ending in “s”; irregular plurals take an apostrophe and an “s”: The […]

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Writing Tip: Spaced-Out Ellipses

Ellipses should be spaced out in marketing copy (“. . .”). They’re primarily used to show that text is omitted. They can also be used as a point of suspension (Our lowest price . . . ever!), though those can usually be replaced with an em dash (Our lowest price—ever!). When part of a sentence is omitted, we […]

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Writing Tip: Formatting Dates

For dates that include the month or the month and year, just use the numeral for the date (this will be the case for the vast majority of marketing copy): January 1 January 1, 2015 If no month is included, turn the numeral into an ordinal, preferably spelled out. If it’s used with a numeral, […]

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Writing Tip: Formatting Quotes

Whenever you include a quote in your copy, it’s important to show the source. If the quote stands alone (in its own paragraph, as a social post, etc.), it should be formatted like this: “For it is written, ‘I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart.’” […]

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Writing Tip: Job Titles & Departments

In most cases, job titles are lowercased: He is the professor of biblical studies. Jane Smith, president and CEO, will speak at the meeting. Author, speaker, and writer John Smith will attend the conference. However, there are a few exceptions where capitalization is necessary. In title-cased text, capitalize job titles as you would any other […]

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Writing Tip: Best-Selling, Bestselling & Best Seller

We often talk about best sellers, some of our best-selling titles by bestselling authors. Here’s how to distinguish each usage: Best-selling (with a hyphen) is used to describe the product that has sold the best (whether it’s within our ecosystem, nationally, over the years, etc.): This is one of our best-selling resources. Bestselling (without a […]

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Writing Tip: Spelling Out Centuries

Ordinal numbers with centuries should always be spelled out: the twenty-first century However, since this can take up a lot of space, feel free to substitute numerals where appropriate (H1s, email subject lines, or other scenarios where space is at a premium): the 21st century If the century is used as an adjective (typically placed […]

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