I've just remembered: Jeroen Wiedenhof, a sinologist at Leyden
University has one written a small paper on the writing of
linguistics papers, that's really very good (Wiedenhof 1996).
I could only find a Dutch version, so I'll try to summarize (with
my own opinion parenthetically added):


1. General

  Explain all abbreviations you use beforehand. Define all technical
  terms, even though you know your audience knows them already; perhaps
  they have a different conception of them than you have. Don't use
  footnotes, except for really interesting asides (but I personally
  am mighty fond of them).

2. Metalanguage

  Keep the language you describe and the language you use for your
  description visually separated. Forms from the language you
  describe are placed in double quotes and using an italic font
  (but in e-mail that might be too much of a good thing: I use
  _ (underscore) to separate forms: _denden_. The meaning of those
  forms is given in single guotes: _denden_ 'omgangstaal'.
  Numbered examples given on a separate line need not be in italics.


  In-line quotes in double quotes: Rempt (1999a, 1) says "In-line
  quotes in double quotes". In-line quotes need not be literal, but
  may be paraphrases. Longer quotes are put in a paragraph of their
  own, indented. (blockquotes in html). Don't overuse the pedantic
  _sic_, but correct misprints and typos silently.

4. References

  Use page references when citing an author. How exactly you must
  format your list with references depends upon the journal. (Look
  for examples at the bibliography on my conlang webpages.
  (Rempt 1999b)

5. Examples

  Give enough examples. Give more examples. Single words can
  be given in-line, as indicated above. Longer examples should
  be given glossed, with the first line the original sentence,
  the second line the glosses, the third line the translation.
  Keep the glosses consistent throughout your paper (better still,
  troughout your _oevre_). Number your examples.

  1. do    tan kaulon.zi nahan.
     1sMGH TAN house.AUG go
     I am going to the big house.

  The glosses must be lined out to word-level; otherwise it's just
  too much work to read the examples. (Yes, this is a lot of tedious
  work, and there's no good wordprocessor that helps you with it.)

6. Conclusion

  Let the text rest for a while before sending it out into the
  world. Let someone else read it, too.


  Wiedenhof, Jeroen. 1996. Aanwijzingen voor het schrijven van een
    taalkundig werkstuk.

  Rempt, Boudewijn. 1999a. Interlinear text. email to the Conlang list.

  Rempt, Boudewijn. 1999b. Bibliographry.


Of course, I'd advise everyone who can read Dutch to go and read
the original :-).

Boudewijn Rempt  |