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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Conversion from Bluebook to Chicago Manual of Style

I was advised that there will be a book incorporating the Kelsen conference papers, so I just spent the better part of a full workday converting this essay from Bluebook to Chicago Manual of Style, using the publisher's template for headings, footnotes, references, and so on.

BoxingIt's been a long time since I used the Chicago Manual.  As with all languages, it takes a while to get fluent.  But if you don't work a lot with court cases, statutes, and the other usual stuff of legal writing, it actually makes more sense, contains more information, and results in a shorter piece.  The big pains in the patoot are that you have to show beginning and end pages for journal articles as well as publisher information for books.  For law review articles, you can get the page ranges pretty quickly by clicking the "print/download" button on Hein Online, and Amazon is pretty good about publisher information, although it doesn't list the city of the publisher.

Normal people would have a research assistant do this but (a) I don't have one, (b) I probably wouldn't trust him or her to be as anal about it as I am anyway, and (c) I get a kind of sick pleasure out of it.

I am now available for consultation on these weighty matters as a service to the community.

Posted by Jeff Lipshaw on August 13, 2014 at 11:42 AM | Permalink


You would cringe in pain to see the horrors that I inflict in my early drafts of everything. I usually have two or three citation formats in a single paper, sometimes because I copy citations from drafts of my other papers, and sometimes just because my brain works in 'em all, so I'll write a bluebook format one minute, and apa or chicago or something the next. terrible.

Posted by: Paul Gowder | Aug 17, 2014 8:06:36 PM

Mendeley is free, I think. (our school has a site license to EndNote). But the key is that Hein, etc. all export references, and thus have the information. Further, once you gather it once, you have it forever!

Posted by: Michael Risch | Aug 14, 2014 1:38:37 PM

Mike, first, I'm WAY too cheap to buy it. Second, it's not really the formatting that is the problem. It's collecting the information.

Posted by: Jeff Lipshaw | Aug 13, 2014 12:16:20 PM

or similar... (I guess that's really three words, but not as dramatic)

Posted by: Michael Risch | Aug 13, 2014 11:56:35 AM

I have one word for you: Endnote

Posted by: Michael Risch | Aug 13, 2014 11:56:00 AM

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