Author's last name is too short to be displayed without first name


I wanted to cite an article of an author with the name of Li, W.

The format of my university only wants the last name to be cited in the text. It should appear as " …(Li,2019)".

Instead, what appeared in text is “…(W. Li, 2019)”. 

I tried to change the name to three characters: “Lii, W” to see what happens.

It then appeared in the text as “…(Lii, 2019)”. This is the correct format I want.

Now the problem is, how to tell endnote to allow last name of less than 3 alphabets to be displayed in text without inclusion of first name?

The issue isn’t the length, but that there is likely to be another paper cited with an author with the surname “Li” with different initials.  Most publishers’ styles require that two authors with the same name be distinguished from one another by their initials.  

Sometimes this happens by mistake, when one record is Li, William and the other Li, W and other times it is truly two different authors, Li, W and Li, R.  In the first case you can fix it by copying Li, W to both records.  (even spacing and full stops can trick endnote.)

If you truly want to ignore the correct formatting rules, you can change the output style to (inappropriately) cite them without initials. 

See here for instructions: 

Hmm… I didn’t realize that the APA style requires initials to be displayed for two authors of same last name. 

I tried to change one of the authors name to “Li[space]” and leave another as “Li”.

and it works! Now both were cited as the last name only without initials. Though it’s not the correct APA style, that’s how my lecturer wants it to be.

Thanks for the explanation and link!