How to reference a novel or short story

  • Key things to remember when referencing novels in MHRA

    • The basic guidelines are the same as those applying to books.
    • The bibliography needs to be arranged alphabetically by author surname, so always reverse the name of the novelist in the bibliography reference. Many scholarly versions of novels will have editors.  The editor's name follows the title, as in the examples below.
    • Use book title as it appears on the title page.
    • If any publication details are not given in the source, use: ‘[n.p.]’ (= no place), ‘[n. pub.]’ (= no publisher), ‘[n.d.]’ (= no date).
    • Include page number(s) in footnote references only as you are citing a specific section of the book, in the form ‘p.’ for ‘page’ or ‘pp.’ for ‘pages’. In the bibliography you are citing the whole book, so no page numbers are needed.
    • Put a full stop at the end of footnote references, but not at the end of bibliography references.

    Referencing a novel (no editor)

    Footnote format: Firstname Lastname, Book Title (Place of publication: Publisher, Year), p. x. 

    For example:

    Kazuo Ishiguro, The Remains of the Day (London: Faber and Faber, 1989), p. 245.


    Bibliography format: Lastname, Firstname, Book Title (Place of publication: Publisher, Year) 

    For example:

    Ishiguro, Kazuo, The Remains of the Day (London: Faber and Faber, 1989)


    Referencing a novel with an author and editor

    The bibliography needs to be arranged alphabetically by author surname, so always reverse the name of the first author in the bibliography reference. The editor's name follows the title, as in the examples below.

    Footnote format: Firstname Lastname, Book Title, ed. by Firstname Lastname (Place of publication: Publisher, Year), p. x. 

    For example:

    Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus, ed. by Maurice Hindle, rev. edn (London: Penguin, 2003), pp. 62-63. 


    Bibliography format: Lastname, Firstname, Book Title, ed. by Firstname Lastname (Place of publication: Publisher, Year) 

    For example: 

    Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft, Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus, ed. by Maurice Hindle, rev. edn (London: Penguin, 2003) 


    Key things to remember when referencing short stories

    • The basic guidelines are the same as those applying to book chapters.
    • The bibliography needs to be arranged alphabetically by author surname, so always reverse the name of the story author in the bibliography reference. Many scholarly versions of short story collections will have editors.  The editor's name follows the title, as in the examples below.
    • Use book title as it appears on the title page.
    • If any publication details are not given in the source, use: ‘[n.p.]’ (= no place), ‘[n. pub.]’ (= no publisher), ‘[n.d.]’ (= no date).
    • Include page number(s) in footnote references only as you are citing a specific section of the book, in the form ‘p.’ for ‘page’ or ‘pp.’ for ‘pages’. In the bibliography you are citing the whole book, so no page numbers are needed.
    • Put a full stop at the end of footnote references, but not at the end of bibliography references.

    Referencing a short story from a collection

    Footnote format: Firstname Lastname, ‘Story Title’, in Book Title, ed. by Firstname Lastname (Place of publication: Publisher, Year), pp. x-xx (p. x).

    For example:

    Jean Lorrain, ‘The Spectral Hand’, in Late Victorian Gothic Tales,ed. by Roger Luckhurst (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005), pp. 177-182 (p. 196).


    Bibliography format: Lastname, Firstname, ‘Story Title’, in Book Title, ed. by Firstname Lastname (Place of publication: Publisher, Year), pp. x-xx  

    For example:

    Lorrain, Jean, ‘The Spectral Hand’, in Late Victorian Gothic Tales, ed. by Roger Luckhurst (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005), pp. 177-182