Rendered bibliography differs markedly from CSL Editor view

Hi. I modified a style in the CSL Editor and gave it a new ID, but when I render the bibliography in my Google Doc, the references differ from the CSL Style Editor view in a few ways.

For example: Book titles should be in italics and unabbreviated (as they are in the CSL Editor view) but in my document they are non-italics and abbreviated.

For example, in the CSL editor, I see this line:

Bouton, Mark E. «Conditioning and Learning». (italics)Noba Textbook Series: Psychology(end italics), 2020.

But in my document, the bibliography reads rather differently, and even includes editors not seen in the CSL viewer (which, actually I like seeing the editors!)

Bouton, Mark E. «Conditioning and Learning». In: Noba Textb. Ser. Psychol. Biswas-Diener R, and Diener E (eds.). Chicago, IL: DEF publishers, 2020.

How to make sure that Zotero is producing what the CSL Editor is showing?
I'm happy to attach my CSL and/or JSON if anyone can help. Thanks!

All I really want is a style like ML8 author-date only with the year near the end, "pp." before pages numbers at the end, and article titles in quotes, with abbreviated month and day for newspaper and magazine articles, e.g...

But modifying the Mares example to read how it seems my publisher wants* and doing Search By Example, just produced a bunch of "Perfect match!"es that all had the year at the beginning, no quotes, no "pp", ...i.e. not matches at all. I ended up starting from "Foodborne Pathogens and Disease" format from the Zotero Library and modifying as needed.

*(Mares 2001)
Mares, Isabela. «Firms and the welfare state: When, why, and how does social policy matter to employers?» In (italics)Varieties of capitalism. The institutional foundations of comparative advantage(end italics), Peter A. Hall & David Soskice (eds.), Oxford University Press, 2001, pp. 184–213.
  • (arg. I really wish there was an "edit" option in these forums!)
    Meant to say: Journal of Neurophysiology was a close style that did appear on the search.
  • ^edit but was abbreviating authors first names, so still would have had to edit anyway.
  • (arg. I really wish there was an "edit" option in these forums!)
    There is.
  • We'd want to see the CSL JSON and the CSL for this (post to or or the like & link to from here), but apart from the book title abbreviation
    (which is set by form="short" but automated using a list in the word processor add-on that's not used in the editor), this looks like it's either not produced by the same data or not by the same style.

    Are you aware, btw., of Zotero's built-in style editor (under Tools-->Developer)? That'd allow you to test locally much more quickly than using the google doc.
    But modifying the Mares example to read how it seems my publisher wants* and doing Search By Example, just produced a bunch of "Perfect match!
    Note that search by example produces two percentage values: one for the citation, one for the bibliography. You're likely to get perfect matches for an author date style's citation, so it's mainly the 2nd percentage you want to pay attention to. I'd be surprised if you found a perfect match.
  • @adamsmith Thank you, your response is again extremely helpful. I now understand the matching better.
    For some reason I was unaware of the Zotero version of the style editor. Thanks, I will use that.
    I just discovered two things:
    1. The Visual Style Editor online ( will sometimes render "long" versions of containers (e.g., titles) even if the setting is actually on "short" -- i.e. switching between "short" and "long" for a collection title can result in no apparent change in the visual editor, but when you render the document, you see the "short" version (if it's set to short, which mine apparently was). So, explicitly setting it to long, the abbreviations are gone.
    2. My Google Doc had gotten put in "Refresh Only" mode for Zotero, and I was under the mistaken impression that changing Document Preferences would trigger a Refresh (because it always looked like it would take a few seconds whenever I changed styles). But no. Instead, actually selecting Refresh explicitly is what got everything to sync up properly for me now.
    So I think I'm good now. :-)
    Thanks again.

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