Monday, May 15, 2006
This is the American Psychological Association's (APA) publication manual. This is pretty much the bible for writing psychology papers. Every little detail of how to write, right down to how many spaces go after a period, exactly what order to put information in, where every line in a table goes, etc, is here, and must be followed exactly or you'll never get published and you'll soon be homeless, eating bugs and discarded tacos.
I can live with that. There needs to be a standard so that everyone is on the same page, and writing is clear, concise, and organized so that anyone can pick up a paper and know exactly where to look for the information they want. But the ironic thing is that the APA Manual itself is the most poorly written, poorly organized book I have ever come across.
There is no table of contents. The only way to find anything is to flip through the entire book, looking for the section you need. Oh, you could look in the Index, but that will take some flipping too; it's not at the end of the book where you'd expect, but a few pages before the introduction and preface which take up the last few pages. Doesn't exactly put the "pre" in preface. Oh, and there's the table of contents...between the Index and the Intro. Weird.
I just find it ironic that a book about clear organization is so poorly organized. It's like writing an anti-hunting book on the skin of baby seals, using their blood as ink.
Hmmm...where did that come from? I'm a sick fuck.
P.S. Correct me if I'm wrong here...maybe my copy of the book was just bound with the pages in the wrong order or something.
P.P.S. I'm obviously writing this to procrastinate while I'm writing my thesis.