biblatex-tutorial has a few words about the
.bib file format and discusses a few common examples.
Dominik Waßenhoven's DTK article (in German) about
biblatex also includes a short section about
.bib files https://web.archive.org/web/20161025012738/https://www.dante.de/DTK/Ausgaben/2008-2.pdf
The style documentations for styles written by Alex Ball have extensive example sections showing the
.bib entry and the output. While your chosen style may not give the exact same output and may be different in a few details (his styles offer a great many features that are not implemented in the standard styles), the entries shown there may still serve as an example of good practice. The
biblatex-bath documentation and the
oxyear style documentation are well worth a look.
I also always recommend a look at the example entries in
biblatex-examples.bib (the file should be installed on your system, you can find it with
kpsewhich biblatex-examples.bib or you can view it on GitHub). There are even some explanatory annotations for some entries. The database is supposed to be used with both the legacy BibTeX and the modern Biber backend, so it is still ASCII only. Nowadays I would of course recommend Biber and UTF-8 encoding of the file.
It is good to keep some pieces of advice from
btxdoc (which is for BibTeX, but the general ideas of course also apply to
biblatex) in mind (while I agree with the general sentiments expressed there, I don't really agree with all of the examples)
The standard style’s thirteen entry types do reasonably well at formatting most entries, but no scheme with just thirteen formats can do everything perfectly.
Thus, you should feel free to be creative in how you use these entry types (but if you have to be too creative, there’s a good chance you’re using the wrong entry type).
Don’t take the field names too seriously. Sometimes, for instance, you might have to include the publisher’s address along with the publisher’s name in the
publisher field, rather than putting it in the
Or sometimes, difficult entries work best when you make judicious use of the
Don’t take the warning messages too seriously. Sometimes, for instance, the year appears in the title, as in The 1966 World Gnus Almanac. In this case it’s best to omit the
year field and to ignore BibTeX’s warning message.
You should feel free to experiment a bit, play around with the various types and fields and see what you get. Usually there are two ways you can influence the output: Via the input in the
.bib file or via modifications of the bibliography/citation style. In the end what matters is the output in citations and the bibliography and if you have to go against some recommendations or have to bend the rules a bit to get what you want, then so be it. Of course I prefer to stay true to the meaning of the entry types and fields, but I'm also aware that it can be tricky to get
biblatex to do what you want and sometimes a little abuse of the data model can offer a quick way out of your conundrum.