# Following DATETIME_FORMAT with field names

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6 - Interface Innovator

Hi Airtable Friends,

I want to combine four things in my primary field: (1) Story ID#, (2) Date, (3) Storyteller, and (4) Story Title – all separated by a " - ", of course. I was able to get the first two things with this formula:

({Story ID#} & " - " & DATETIME_FORMAT(Received, ‘DD/MM’)) & " - "

But when I follow this up with {Storyteller} & " - " & {Story Title}, I get a message that says: “Sorry, there was a problem saving this field. Can’t save field because it causes a circular reference.” To be clear, here’s the full formula that keeps getting rejected:

({Story ID#} & " - " & DATETIME_FORMAT(Received, ‘DD/MM’)) & " - " {Storyteller} & " - " & {Story Title}

I’ve tried a number of variations using parenthesis and curly brackets, but always get the “sorry” message. Grateful to anyone who can help me get past this irksome obstacle!

1 Solution

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14 - Jupiter

Out of curiousity, @Alba_Machado, can you try copy/pasting this and see what happens?

``````T({Story ID#}) &
" - " &
" - " &
T({Storyteller}) &
" - " &
T({Story Title})
``````
22 Replies 22
14 - Jupiter

You’re just missing 1 single `&` :slightly_smiling_face:

This should work for you:

``````{Story ID#} & " - " & DATETIME_FORMAT(Received, 'DD/MM') & " - " & {Storyteller} & " - " & {Story Title}
``````

Every new statement in there, whether it’s a reference to a field, or a string enclosed in `"..."`, needs to be concatenated, or “added on” to the end of the chain with a new `&` symbol. You were just missing one in-between the second `" - "` and `{Storyteller}`.

6 - Interface Innovator

Alas, it did not work for me. :slightly_frowning_face: But thanks for taking a crack at it!

6 - Interface Innovator

Oh, I should have explained: I got the exact same “sorry” message.

14 - Jupiter

Ah! It was bad quotes too – I updated my formula above to remove the bad quotes; can you try it again?

6 - Interface Innovator

Tried again and this time it’s “invalid formula.” Checked, and that was actually the “sorry” message the last time, too. So it didn’t repeat exactly the same message, but it still doesn’t work.

14 - Jupiter

Ok, let’s take a look at the `DATETIME_FORMAT()` function then – that seems the most likely culprit here. I’m looking at docs and will post back.

6 - Interface Innovator

Thanks so much! I’ve been digging around too because I’ve never had trouble before trying the DATETIME_FORMAT function

14 - Jupiter

Hmm - your formatting there seems ok. And everything else about the formula looks right.

When you tried the formula that I posted above, did you copy the entire formula out of the code box that I posted? If not, can you try clearing your formula editor entirely and paste in my formula exactly as it is in that code box?

6 - Interface Innovator

I did the first time, but I tried again just now in case I slipped up somehow. And still no. :anguished: