Anime Maru Style Guide Version 0.9
As an extremely serious anime news outlet, Anime Maru seeks to ensure clarity and consistency among its many staff and guest writers. Upon introduction, this style guide will serve as a reference for writers and editors for appropriate syntax and usage on our hard hitting news website.
The culture of anime and manga is rife with unique phrases and names, additionally complicated by the fact that its influenced by an entirely different language. As the media landscape covering otaku culture grows, from the smallest blogs to the biggest news sites, we hope that this guide will be a useful resource for other websites and writers across the internet.
This guide will be updated regularly as usage and conventions change.
Anime Maru uses the latest version of Merriam-Webster’s dictionary as found on their website. Unless the a word is specifically addressed on another word list, use the first American spelling of all words.
If an issue is not specifically addressed in this guide, reference the American English BuzzFeed style guide. If the issue is not covered there, consult the latest version of the AP Stylebook.
The following section defines standard usage recommended by this guide. Commonly used and often confused phrases are listed alphabetically. Many entries simply give the correct spelling and formatting, but sometimes more details are provided. Note to never add an ‘s’ to words of Japanese, Korean, and Chinese origin to denote plurality.
This list only describes spelling, capitalization, and usage. Formatting does not appear in this list — names of anime, movies, and songs should still be rendered in italics or quotations as noted in other parts of the guide. In this list, words appear in italics if they are used as examples.
If the style of a title or name is not listed here, refer to MyAnimeList, then Wikipedia as a reference for usage.
A-1 Pictures Always full name, do not abbreviate to A-1.
AIC, AIC A.S.T.A., AIC Build, AIC Frontier, AIC PLUS+, AIC Spirits, AIC Takarazuka
a lot Not alot.
Anime Central Do not abbreviate.
Anime Expo Do not abbreviate.
anime blog Do not use aniblog unless it is part of an official title or name, e.g. The Aniblog Tournament.
Aria the Animation
Blu-ray, Blu-ray Disc
Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai Haganai acceptable after first reference. Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai NEXT (Haganai NEXT after first reference) for second season.
Carole & Tuesday
Clannad, Clannad: After Story
Comiket Acceptable in all references. Abbreviation for Comic Market event held in Japan biannually.
convention Do not use con as an abbreviation unless it is part of the convention’s name.
disk Not disc unless referring to Blu-ray.
doujin, doujinshi Doujin refers to all mediums of fan-created work (figures, games, books, etc.). Doujinshi refers specifically to manga and books. Can be used as a noun or adjective (e.g. doujin music).
E3 Electronic Entertainment Expo. E3 in all references.
eroge refers specifically to visual novels with explicit or adult sexual content. Visual novels otherwise unsuitable for children (violence, horror, etc.) are not eroge.
Fate Fate/stay night, Fate/Zero, Fate/kaleid liner Prima Illya, Fate/Prototype, Fate/Apocrypha. Refer to the franchise generically as Fate, not Fate/ .
Five Centimeters per Second
Funko Pop, Funko Pops Omit exclamation point, do not call them “Funkos”
Idolmaster when referring to the franchise. The iDOLM@STER when referring to the show and game. Related works: The iDOLM@STER Cinderella Girls, Cinderella Girls acceptable on second reference. Do not use Deremas. The iDOLM@STER Million Live (Million Live acceptable on second reference).
iPod, iPad, iPhone, etc.
K-ON!, K-ON! Movie, K-ON!! Use one exclamation mark for season one and two for season 2. K-ON to refer to the franchise generically.
Kyoto Animation on all references. Do not abbreviate to KyoAni.
loli, lolicon Loli refers to the character or genre, lolicon refers to the target audience of the genre.
Love Live refers to the franchise as a whole. Names of the anime are: Love Live! School Idol Project (Love Live! on second reference if not ambiguous); Love Live! School Idol Project 2nd Season; Love Live! The School Idol Movie; Love Live! Sunshine!! (Do not abbreviate to Sunshine) ; Love Live! Sunshine!! The School Idol Movie: Over the Rainbow (Over the Rainbow on second reference). Do not use an exclamation point when referring to the franchise.
mahou shoujo acceptable for use in anime contexts. Magical girl is always acceptable.
Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica, Puella Magi Madoka Magica
manga, mangaka “manga” refers to Japanese comic books, a mangaka is an author of such books. Do not call manga “comic books”.
MyAnimeList Not MyAnimeList.net when referring to the website by name
netorare, NTR Both acceptable usage.
Ore no Imouto ga Konnani Kawaii Wake ga Nai Oreimo acceptable after first reference, and in headlines. Second season of the anime Oreimo 2 or equivalent (never use the form with the period at the end).
ping pong “Table tennis” is generally preferred when talking about the competitive sport.
Precure, Pretty Cure Both acceptable when generically referring to the franchise. Use Precure on second reference. Refer to heroines of the series generically as Cures (singular Cure). Cure White, Cures Marine and Blossom, Dark Precure.
Ren’ai Circulation The song performed by Hanazawa Kana (put in quotes).
renai The genre. Not ren’ai
Ro-Kyu-Bu! Not Rou-Kyu-Bu!
seifuku generically refers to uniforms and is commonly understood to mean school uniforms. serafuku (literally ‘sailor uniform’) refers specifically to female school uniforms.
Shaft (Animation studio)
shota refers to the character or genre, shotacon refers to the target audience of the genre.
slice of life
subreddit prepend /r/ when referring to a subreddit’s anime. e.g. /r/anime. Avoid constructions like “the manga subreddit”. “The subreddit /r/manga” is preferred.
Touhou The series of games by ZUN. Capitalize but do not italicize when used as an adjective.
trap This word is derogatory and should not be used outside of specific contexts. Otoko no ko is preferred when describing fictional characters.
video game Two words in all uses.
visual novel Two words in all uses, not capitalized. Do not abbreviate to VN.
Wake Up, Girls! Name of the anime and the group. Wake Up Girls to refer to the franchise. WUG after first reference for both usage. Do not italicize when referring to the group or the franchise as a whole.
Weiß Schwarz, Weiss Schwarz Both acceptable
Working!! Name of anime. Two exclamation marks in all references. Working to refer to the franchise. Do not use Working’!! for second season.
Yotsuba&! Yotsuba when referring to the franchise as a whole.
Anime Maru encourages writers to place surnames in the order determined by the linguistic origin of the name, viz. place the surname before the personal name in names of Japanese origin, but after the personal name in names of Western origin. (e.g. Takamachi Nanoha, Fate Testarossa). If they choose to do this, this usage must remain consistent throughout the entire post.
Alternatively, writers may place the given name in front of the surname (if existent) for all cases. In this case, usage must also remain consistent.
Asian Personal Names
Treat surnames and personal names each as one distinct word, regardless if they are multiple words in the original language.
Correct: Tanaka Rie, Yang Wenli
Incorrect: Ta Naka Rie, Yang Wen Li
If the individual is known by a stage name or pen name, use it unless there is a specific reason not to. Surnames appear in the order determined by the linguistic origin, and writers may choose to place surnames last unless specifically indicated.
µ’s (not “Muse” or “u’s”)
Aya Hirano (If she is the only Japanese name appearing in the article, place her given name first.)
Dempagumi.inc (Not Denpagumi. Do not omit .inc.)
High and Mighty Color
Illyasviel von Einzbern
Louise Françoise Le Blanc de La Vallière (just “Louise” is acceptable)
Machico (for Saitou Machiko)
Nisio Isin (always in this order)
Poppin’Party (Do not use “Popipa” or similar abbreviations)
The World Standard (“Wasuta” acceptable on second usage.)
TRUE (for Karasawa Miho)
Wake Up, Girls! (the group. “WUG” ok after first reference)
Titles of Works
English and Japanese are both acceptable for use, but they should be used consistently. Do not switch between English and Japanese titles within a single piece of writing. For clarity (especially when using a title that may be unfamiliar) the full alternate title can be provided on the first reference.
Example: In the latest episode of Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou (otherwise known as Girls’ Last Tour), Chito and Yuuri explore a strange temple.
Always capitalize the first and last words of a title. Pronouns should be capitalized as well. Do not capitalize conjunctions, prepositions, and articles. When a title name is in Japanese, capitalize the first letter of all words except for particles (unless the last word of the title is a particle). When spacing or capitalization is in doubt, refer to official sources such as publishers or MyAnimeList/Anime News Network/Wikipedia etc.
Ore no Imouto wa Konnani Kawaii Wake ga Nai
Titles of entire works
Series names, books, albums, films, named orchestral works, etc. should be rendered in italics. Use single quotes when titles appear in a headline. Entries in a larger work (episode names, chapter names, song names) should be rendered with quotations marks. Games that are not video games should be rendered without quotes in roman type (even when they are brand names). The Place Promised in Our Early Days, Castle in the Sky, “First Love”, Tales of Symphonia, Texas hold ’em , Magic: the Gathering.
Second season notation
Some anime denote successive seasons in non-standard ways. Examples include adding successive exclamation marks (Hayate no Gotoku!!, K-ON!!), symbols (Yuru Yuri♪♪), or name variations (Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha A’s, Zoku Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei, Aria the Natural). Render potentially misleading titles as “season 2 of [anime]”, or equivalent. These types of generic references are always acceptable. Only italicize the portion of the title that refers to the name of the series, unless using a single number: Railgun season 2, third season of Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei, Rosario + Vampire 2.
Names of franchises
Use roman type for franchises when referring to a media franchise in general, or when it is being used to describe something. “I am a big Love Live fan”; “I love Macross music”. Use italics when referring to media series. “What’s your favorite Gundam anime?”; “the Idolmaster video games”. In general, when referring to a franchise, omit all punctuation in the franchises’s name.
Capitalize all proper nouns. When a proper noun contains multiple words, capitalize each word except for conjunctions, prepositions, and articles. e.g., Michelle Ruff, Catherine St. Onge, Kyoto Animation, Cowboy Bebop.
Capitalizing titles: Capitalize the first and last words of a title. Pronouns should be capitalized as well. Do not capitalize conjunctions, prepositions, and articles in titles.
Personal Titles: Capitalize official titles (not roles) preceding and attached to a name, but use lowercase when the title is used generically. (e.g, Lord Genome; a king named Arturia; director Akiyuki Shinbou”).
Do not capitalize ‘episode’, ‘chapter’, ‘version’, etc. when followed by a number or letter, unless it is part of a title. (e.g., episode 5 of Angel Beats, Nisemonogatari chapter 16, Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace).
Astronomical Bodies: Capitalize the names of planets, stars, and other named astronomical bodies only when they are used in a specific context.
Date: Months, names of holidays, and dates of the week are always capitalized.
Names of Seasons: Do not capitalize the names of seasons, unless they are being referred to in a more specific context. For example, do not capitalize ‘summer’ but do capitalize ‘Summer 2008’ when referring to the airing season. Another correct usage would be ‘summer of 2008’.
Time: Do not capitalize a.m. or p.m., midnight, noon, etc.
Avoid excessive usage of anime and manga-related slang. Provide context or definitions of more obscure phrases.
When titles have official variants (Hidamari Sketch, Sunshine Sketch), be consistent when choosing one variant over another.
Use Kana Spelling as the standard of romanizing Japanese text (titles, quotations, phrases etc.). Render commonly used phrases as they are accepted in English: Osaka, Tokyo, romaji not Oosaka, Toukyou, roumaji.
Use Pinyin as the standard of romanizing Chinese text and Revised Romanization of Korean as the standard of romanizing Korean text. For all other romanization the author may use any widely recognized system for that language.
Do not use the Japanese comma or period. Instead, use their Roman analogs. Use the question mark when necessary, even if the final particle “ka” is present.
Never change the spelling of Japanese (or Asian) words to demonstrate plural: The army of samurai marched towards the village. Otaku love their dakimakura.
As with all topic-specific terminology, explain or define all foreign phrases on first reference, except when there is reasonable certainty that readers will be familiar with a phrase.
Abbreviations and Acronyms:
Do not use abbreviations and acronyms on first usage unless it is common knowledge (NASA, AIDS, etc.). Do not use OP and ED to refer to opening theme and ending theme.
Gender Neutral Language:
Use gender-neutral language whenever this can be done with clarity. Exceptions include one-gender contexts and direct quotations.
Ask any blogger what he thinks about Accel World. (Revise)
Ask any blogger what they think about Accel World. (Gender neutral)
I would hate to be the osananajimi in a harem show, she would never get screen time. (acceptable because it is a one-gender context)
This section is a specific guide for Anime Maru writers, as a handy reference of the editorial conventions of our content.
For news articles that take place somewhere specific, the article should start with a dateline. The dateline is formatted with the name of the town or city in all caps, followed by a comma and the postal code of the state if in the United States. If the location is outside of the United States, use the name of the country with normal capitalization. The dateline then concludes with an em dash (two – in succession on WordPress).
ABELINE, TX —
GREEN BAY, WI —
TOKYO, Japan —
UNITED NATIONS —
WASHINGTON, D.C. —
“Area man”-style local news posts should always be tagged “Local” and should always contain a dateline. Pick a random town somewhere if the exact location is not relevant.
Standard news posts should contain at least 1 image, and the image should appear before all text. The standard size of images is 640×360 pixels, and should scale to this ratio. If the source image is larger, the author may optionally have the image link to a full size image.
When selecting images to use, try to use official images (screenshots, official art, etc.) or stock images. Do not use fan art unless permission the creator is received. Always set an image as the featured image of each post.
Headlines should be succinct and describe the content of the article. Word headlines in a way that either creates gap humor or works with the featured image to catch readers’ attention. Do not use excessively clickbaity titles.
Tag the titles of all media mentioned meaningfully in an article. Tag “local news” style articles as “local” and articles that reference any entertainment industry as “industry”. Tag articles mentioning video games and any other type of game (such as table top or card games) as “games”.
The purpose of Anime Maru articles is humor and parody, not to mislead readers into believing something false. When developing an article, focus on a humorous central concept and write jokes around that concept.
Avoid interview-style posts and excessive use of quotations in general. As this entire website is make-believe, having too many invented quotes makes the writing seems unnatural.
Avoid articles where one party sues another party over copyright infringement due to works being similar. This is lazy.
Political articles and articles about current events are effective and oftentimes very successful. Avoid articles that may appear insensitive to serious topics. Discuss potentially controversial article ideas with editors before submitting.