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To hyphenate or not?

"Did you see this silly poll? It says that if I were a superhero, I would be Captain America."

"Really? I don't know; I see you as more of a Thor-kind-of-guy."

Or should that be, "I see you as more of a Thor kind-of-guy?

Or simply, "I see you as more of a Thor kind of guy"?
Which form is best?

  • Hypenation can be used if you want to emphasize on that whole sentence as something closlely connected or related. – Noah Jun 18 '12 at 3:44
  • 3
    I think this is a case where several different rules are all acceptable. One common rule is to hyphenate adjective phrases but not noun phrases. So you would say "I see you more as a Thor kind of guy", but "I am looking for Thor-kind-of-guy players for my team". – Peter Shor Jun 18 '12 at 4:09

Generally, the correct usage of Hyphens would be with "kind-of-guy" as the preceding noun is variable and not produced as part of the phrase due to its tendency to change depending on context and it forms a phrase that emphasizes the expression where one word for it was not available, e.g. bride-to-be, operation-in-waiting.

An alternative could be "Thor-like" but here the phrasing is being done with conjunction of the noun as that is the correct usage due to a comparison, e.g. Dog-like, cat-like, etc.

However, in common usage, the last sentence is also acceptable. It just changes the effect that you have when a person reads that sentence depending on the scenario.

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