Citations Modifiers: Prefix, Suffix, Page Number, Author/Year Suppression in Papers for mac

Citations in the mac version of Papers (this is not available on Windows) recognizes various citation modifiers, that allow the addition of a prefix, suffix or page number, and allow author or year suppression. This document describes their syntax and their use.

This page is only relevant if you use the standard 'Papers Citation' format. If you use another format, as set in the 'Citations' preferences in Papers, then this document is not relevant. Instead, you should use whatever syntax is supported by that format (like BibTeX, MMD, Pandoc or ConTeXt).

Syntax

All the examples below assume you have citations already inserted in your manuscript, either using the floating Citations window and search, or using the menu item 'Copy as... Papers Citation' in the main Papers application. This is where the citekey {Smith:1997tu} comes from. The exact formatting of the citation used in the examples depends also on the journal style applied to the manuscript: the output after formatting will be different for different styles (the example is APA).

  • No modifier:

    before formatting

    ... as shown before {Smith:1997tu}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown before (Smith, 1997), birds can fly ...

  • Prefix

    before formatting

    ... as shown before {see Smith:1997tu}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown before (see Smith, 1997), birds can fly ...

  • Suffix

    before formatting

    ... as shown before {Smith:1997tu and common sense}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown before (Smith, 1997 and common sense), birds can fly ...

  • Page number

    before formatting

    ... as shown before {Smith:1997tu p.89}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown before (Smith, 1997, page 89), birds can fly ...

    Note: you can also use other variants like 'p89', 'p 89', 'pp89-100', 'pp.89-100', 'pp. 89-100'

  • Author suppression

    before formatting

    ... as shown by Smith {*Smith:1997tu}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown by Smith (1997), birds can fly ...

  • Year suppression

    before formatting

    ... as shown in 1997 {Smith:1997tu*}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown in 1997 (Smith), birds can fly ...

Tips, Tricks and Limitations

  • You can combine several modifiers

    before formatting

    ... as shown by Smith {for instance *Smith:1997tu p.89}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown by Smith (for instance 1997, page 89), birds can fly ...

  • You can use it with multi-paper citations

    before formatting

    ... as shown before {see Smith:1997tu, Wang:1998kp}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown before (see Smith, 1997 & Wang, 1998), birds can fly ...

  • You can escape a comma by using a double-comma (otherwise, the comma would be intepreted as a cite delimiter)

    before formatting

    ... as shown in 1997 {for instance,, Smith:1997tu*}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown in 1997 (for instance, Smith), birds can fly ...

  • You should add a space between the citekey and subsequent punctuation when applicable, and the space will be removed when formatted:

    before formatting

    ... as shown in 1997 {Smith:1997tu* ,, for instance}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown in 1997 (Smith, for instance), birds can fly ...

  • The citekey is identified by Papers as the only word that contains a ':', or if no ':' is found, the last word. For non-standard citekeys that don't include a ':' character and that are not at the end of the cite, you can use quotes to clearly indicate where the citekey is:

    before formatting

    ... as shown in 1997 {see "Smith_on_birds*" or common sense}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown in 1997 (see Smith or common sense), birds can fly ...

    Note: as an alternative to double quotes, you can use single quotes or the slash sign:

    ... as shown in 1997 {see 'Smith_on_birds*' or common sense}, birds can fly ... ... as shown in 1997 {see /Smith_on_birds*/ or common sense}, birds can fly ...

  • Because of the special role for the colon character ':' in citekey recognition, you might need to take some extra steps to "escape" that character when it is part of the prefix or suffix. For this, you can use quotes around the citekey to clearly identify it, and thus clearly mark that the other characters of the cite are to be considered part of the prefix or suffix:

    before formatting

    ... as shown in 1997 {see "Smith:1997tu*" : 86}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown in 1997 (see Smith:86), birds can fly ...

  • Modifiers are recognized separately for each cited paper. In some styles, the order of the papers in the citation will be adjusted based on the specification, for example to have the earliest paper first. If the prefix is used on the first citekey, and if the corresponding paper move to another position, then the prefix will follow, which might not be what you intended:

    before formatting

    ... as shown before {see Wang:1998kp, Smith:1997tu}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown before (Smith, 1997 & see Wang, 1998), birds can fly ...

  • Page numbers can only contain digits and dashes/hyphens. Other types of page numbers can still be added as a suffix. In this case, the CSL style rules for the page locator won't be applied, but that can simply be worked around by making sure the suffix follows the style specifications:

    before formatting

    ... as shown before {Smith:1997tu ,, page A1-A8}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown before (Smith, 1997, page A1-A8), birds can fly ...

  • Only page locators are supported, but not other locators like chapter, verse,... Again, they can still be added as a suffix. In this case, the CSL style rules for the locator won't be applied, but that can simply be worked around by making sure the suffix follows the style specifications:

    before formatting

    ... as shown before {Smith:1997tu ,, chapter 2}, birds can fly ...

    after formatting

    ... as shown before (Smith, 1997, chapter 2), birds can fly ...

Text editors

  • Pages, TextEdit, and other plain text editors. For all the applications that you can use in conjunction with Papers to format a bibliography, adding a modifier is as simple as typing text. You just need to follow the syntax described above, and be aware of the few tricks and limitations mentioned. Note that there are always 2 versions of your manuscript: the raw unformatted version, and the formatted version (except Microsoft Word, see below). The unformatted version is the document you'll need to edit to add the modifiers. It is the document that contains the citekeys. The unformatted version is used as the template to generate the formatted version when you choose the 'Format Manuscript' action.

    Remember that the final formatted version should in general not be edited. Additional changes in the final formatted version will not be taken into account the next time you format again, and will have to be added back.

  • Microsoft Word. Citations works differently with Microsoft Word. Citations are created as 'fields', that can contain both visible text (either the citekey, or the formatted citation), and invisible content. The invisible content is used by Citations to keep track of which citation is which. As a result, it can safely edit the visible text, and still keep the necessary information in the invisible data to later apply a different format. In other words, the process of formatting the manuscript is reversible.

    In Microsoft Word, you can add citation modifiers the same way as in other apps, by directly editing the citekey to add the prefix, suffix, etc... as described in the syntax above. Again, it's as simple as adding text. However, you cannot add those modifiers if the manuscript has already been formatted, and the citekeys have been replaced with the formatted citation. You will need to revert back to the 'raw' citekey output. For instance, you should not try to add a prefix if you have already '(Smith & Doe, 1991)', but only if you have the raw citekey '{Smith:1991tu}'. Edits you make in the formatted citation '(Smith & Doe, 1991)' will be overwritten the next time you format the manuscript again.

    It is very easy to revert to the raw citekeys, though. For this, you can use the action to 'Unformat Manuscript'. After unformatting the manuscript, the fields will again contain the original citekeys like '{Smith:1991tu}', and you can edit the citekeys and add modifiers. After you format the manuscript again, the modifiers will appear in the formatted citations. You can format and unformat as many times as you want, and the modifiers will be safely stored and restored as needed.