Nice addition, Lib.
The "general" guidelines are starting points (if you don't know the exact procedure for your plane).
In the appendix of the Manual, recoveries are listed for the various aircraft, for both left-hand and right-hand spins.
Also, in general, you would apply those steps in order, and hold all of them, until the rotation stops and you're in a dive. You can remember the order with the Mnemonic --> P.A.R.E (Power, Ailerons, Rudder, Elevator).
Once you've stopped spinning and are in a dive, gently start easing the stick back to recover to level flight -- if you pull the stick back too vigorously in the dive, you'll very likely cause another spin (usually in the opposite direction of the first one).
Something else to keep in mind --> elevator trim, and altered response curves can affect spin recoveries, so if you use those, take some practice time to see if (or how) your favorite plane is affected.
Also, in many planes, the rotation will stop within a turn or two with the proper control inputs, but several of them (DFW, EIII) will recover sluggishly (5 or more turns, so don't give up on those control inputs too soon), and in a few planes, in certain spins (usually right hand), the plane will recover by itself if you just let go of the controls entirely. This is where knowing your particular aircraft, and practicing spins can be very helpful.
Now in cases where the general steps don't work, some additional "tweaks" to the procedure to try are:
P: Despite a couple instances in the manual (RE8, SPAD VII), I haven't found any planes that actually do require you to turn the engine off to recover from a spin, and I don't recommend that. You may need to blip the engine in DH2 & Eindecker. Otherwise, idle power is where to leave it.
A: Ailerons INTO the spin, instead of neutral (in several cases, the extra adverse yaw from the ailerons will help stop the rotation).
R: In ALL RoF planes, rudder is *always* held fully opposite the direction of spin rotation.
E: This one diverges a lot in RoF, from modern planes. Some things to try if the general step (E: Full Forward) isn't working... (Keep the other inputs in though, especially rudder)
i. Ease the elevator more aft - in some cases, like the SE5a, the more nose down trim you have in, the further aft (of full forward) you need. The Pfalz DXII left-hand spin typically needs elevator to be aft of full forward as well.
ii. Rock the Elevator forward and backward - there's a bit of art to the timing of that, but when you get it, it will pop the nose down further, and then the rotation will quickly stop.
Liberator's advice of avoiding unintentional spins entirely is very sound, and the earlier you catch it trying to spin, and correct it, the better off you'll be.
That said, intentional spins, can be quite fun, and they're good practice, not only for improving recovery skill, but also recognizing how the plane behaves as it's getting into a spin.
Make sure you're well above 1000m (3300 ft) when you're practicing recoveries, and in the 3 or 4 really snarky spinners, get up even higher to 1500-2000m (5000-6500 ft).