Why it's important to read this before you begin writing
Everything2 may be unlike anything you have met before. It is not a bulletin board, nor a discussion group; it is a place for writers to share their ideas on many topics, and for readers to enjoy and offer feedback.
When you begin to contribute, there are a few guidelines that you should understand and follow, in order to get the most out of the site.
Run a quick search on your chosen topic.
Use the search box at the top of each page to see if there is an existing title (we call them "nodes") under which you can add writeups. If there is no existing title for your chosen topic yet, the "findings" page will allow you to create a new one. Check out what people have written about the subjects you also want to write about and ask yourself if you can improve on it or if others will find what you want to say interesting.
See How do I submit a writeup of my own? for more on this.
Use Drafts to create your contribution before publishing it.
Drafts are editing areas that allow you to see what your writeup will look like before you post it. Select "Create Draft" at the bottom of a writeup submission box to save a preview, or use the 'Drafts' link in your Epicenter.
By default, your Drafts are private. See the "Sharing and publishing" area below your draft for options to make it public for anyone to see, or to share with specific people on E2. If you're having some problem with a write-up or you just want another pair of eyes to look it over before it's sent out into the world, set the status of your draft to review. This will make it "findable" and alerts the site's editors that you want feedback. The editors are experienced volunteers and are always happy to help you out.
It's highly recommended, but not necessarily required, that new users have editors review their first few writeups to ensure that they are getting the hang of things.
E2 uses HTML formatting.
Formatting on E2 is done using HTML, a fairly simple markup language. E2 will take care of paragraph breaks, if that is all the formatting you expect to do (hit the enter key twice after each paragraph). Alternatively, you can turn on a 'What-You-See-Is-What-You-Get' (WYSIWYG) writeup editor, which you can use like a word processor. Even if you prefer the immediacy of the WYSIWYG editor, have a look at E2 HTML Tags to learn more.
Avoid using things like Microsoft Word to edit your writeups; they introduce a lot of useless HTML that makes it hard to edit your writeup in the future. Use your Drafts or a text editor such as Notepad.
Make hard links.
Hard links are not optional. They are easy to do: just put square brackets around words and phrases, [like so]. You should hard link things related to your writeup, like people, places, technical terms, and idioms.
Just don't link to every darned word, just important ideas or things.
Pipe links allow you to get more creative with links by linking to one thing and displaying another, so [link this|display this] will link this but display this. This can be used to simply link to a different form of a given word or phrase, to add another whole layer of meaning to the text, or to link website pages outside E2.
Our internal links are a distinctive part of E2's culture.
Create soft links to the node after you've published.
From the node you've published in, you should also make softlinks. Think of these as links back to your writing; without softlinks, your work will not be connected to anything else here,and not be read. Just navigate to other nodes using the search box or clicking hard links in your work and E2 will automatically create the link on both nodes, to help people discover your writing. Be creative with these, and try to create at least five, and possibly more softlinks.
Don't Flood New Writeups
There is an unwritten (until now! ha!) rule that has been here for a l-o-n-g time - do not post large numbers of writeups all at once. If you are going to post several, either space them out so there are no more than 3 in the top 15 of New Writeups
, or post some hidden. The reason for this is simple - by flooding, you are impolitely pushing everyone else's work of the bottom of the list, and quite simply, it's considered rude.
If you do this, and have too large a number visible at once, you may find that the editors will hide some of them. Hidden writeups are still posted to the database, and are visible in the Writeups by Type list, but will not be shown in the New Writeups nodelet.
Also note that by default, daylogs are posted as hidden. Daylogs are the predecessor to blogs on the wider Internet, and are a very popular feature on E2. Daylogs very rarely merit being posted un-hidden, so do not be surprised if an editor re-hides them. Not to worry, everyone knows where the daylogs are at, and they'll find them to read them.
You can edit writeups you've already submitted.
Just go back to the link where you posted your writeup (a quick search should find it) and scroll down to the textbox near the bottom: you'll find your words waiting for you. Change whatever you'd like and click Update Writeup, and your writeup will be updated.
Above are just the basics: format, add links, and ask for help if you need it.
If this is not clear, ask questions in the Chatterbox or approach the E2 Staff.
Updated on July 2, 2014 by haqiqat.
Updated on October 4, 2012 by wertperch
Previously updated on September 29, 2012 by wertperch