# Problems with specifying bibliographic punctuation stylings in LaTeX

I'm looking to specify my own custom bibliographic punctuation stylings in a report I'm writing on the LaTeX platform on Overleaf.

However, I'm receiving a few issues. I'll outline all the key lines in my main.tex file:

\usepackage{natbib}

\bibliographystyle{plainnat}
\bibpunct{(}{)}{;}{a}{,}{,}
\bibliography{bibliography}


I'm also using '\citep{...}' as outlined in the Natbib section here: LaTeX/Bibliography Management: Natbib. However, a quick screenshot of my inline references:

I'd like my references to be:

(Massey et al., 1995; Humphreys et al., 2014)

I'm also seeing 'and' and not '&':

But I'd like this to be:

Robitaille & Whitney 2010

If anyone is able to help me on these two issues I would be very appreciative. I just can't see where I have gone wrong.

• Moving \bibpunct{(}{)}{;}{a}{,}{,} to before \begin{document} will clinch things for the brackets. Instead of \bibpunct, you can also use the newer command \setcitestyle to change to round brackets: \setcitestyle{round} – imnothere Jun 30 '16 at 12:39
• To change and to & though, you'll have to upload a modified copy of plainnat.bst. Or switch to a bibliography style that uses & e.g. agsm, then add \setcitestyle{semicolon} to get ; separating the citations. – imnothere Jun 30 '16 at 12:50
• Could you add your solution as a full answer for me. I'd like to implement your suggestions but I'm unsure as to the exacting details. Thanks – user3125347 Jun 30 '16 at 13:00

Moving \bibpunct{(}{)}{;}{a}{,}{,} to before \begin{document} will clinch things for the brackets. Instead of \bibpunct, you can also use the newer command \setcitestyle to change to round brackets: \setcitestyle{round}

To change and to & though, you'll have to upload a modified copy of plainnat.bst. Or switch to a bibliography style that uses & e.g. agsm, then add \setcitestyle{semicolon} to get ; separating the citations.

In summary: it seem to me the following would give what you want:

\usepackage{natbib}
% agsm already use round brackets, so "round" isn't necessary
\setcitestyle{semicolon,aysep={}}
\AtBeginDocument{\renewcommand{\harvardand}{\&}}
\begin{document}
...
\bibliographystyle{agsm}
\bibliography{bibliography}


Here's the example project on Overleaf: https://www.overleaf.com/5596859gctsry

• I must be doing something wrong, because I'm still seeing 'and'. Would it change things if I mentioned I am using overleaf? – user3125347 Jun 30 '16 at 14:14
• my bad — apparently \setcitestyle undoes the change to &! Adding a line \AtBeginDocument{\renewcommand{\harvardand}{\&}} changes in back. (Re-defining \harvardand doesn't work with plainnat, because it doesn't use it.) I've now updated my answer. This isn't specific to Overleaf, it's how natbib and the styles work. :-) – imnothere Jun 30 '16 at 15:09