Readers love lists. Organizing long and possibly confusing information into a list helps readers scan and understand the information. But there are multiple ways to use punctuation in lists, as I was reminded while proofreading a client document that used all of them.

Various style guides have contradictory advice, so my suggestion to the client was to be as consistent as possible. Then, naturally, I went looking for official answers and best practices for lists.

I’ve summarized what I found into nine tips in the August 2021 issue of my newsletter, Wordnerdery. These include “Save lists for three or more items” and “Leave out punctuation and capitalization in short bullets.”

Let me know in the comments if you agree or disagree with any of the points, or if you have any other tips to share.

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