In order to upkeep the quality of content for readership, we require contributors to more or less follow along with the below style guide. Of course rules, by their nature, are meant to be broken – but we believe these pointers will help keep us on target with our community’s posts and keep our readers salivating for more.
We put this at #1 for a reason, and it applies both to subject matter and writing style. We’re always looking for people that have a passion for action sports, but also can relate with readers on an informed, engaging, and personal manner. You don’t need to be an award winning journalist, or be mentioned in the Guinness Book – just give us your best and we all will thank you.
We’re a blog. We use WordPress. It’s the most widely used publishing system on the web, and there’s a ton of info on the finer points all across the web – but don’t be scared, it’s easier and less painful than going to the mall. Give it a test run, and if you run into any trouble try using Google or contact us.
Engaging, keyword rich titles rock. Boring, wordy titles don’t. For example, if writing about your weekend climbing El Cap:
(Horrible Title) ~ “My Weekend”
(Better Title) ~ “A Weekend on El Capitan”
(Great Title) ~ “48 Hours of El Capitan: An Ass Kicking Adventure”
Formatting (Lists, Subheadings, etc.)
In short, use them when you can. It’s a long established fact that readers on the web scan pages looking for specific information and steer away from essays with no discernible breaks. Long unbroken blocks of text aren’t nearly as engaging as lists.& please break up text blocks with subheadings.
Hey, they’re what makes the web great – but do it the right way. Instead of pasting a URL or linking from the text “Click here” – why not use the link in a more contextual way?
Categories, Tags, and Excerpts
WordPress offers several ways of organizing our posts here at OB. Categories are the main ones, and ours can be found at the blue navigation bar at the top. Please one or two appropriate categories for your post. Tags are more specific, and you are welcome to use as many as is prudent.
For example, our article about a climbing weekend on El Cap might be categorized under Adventures, and tagged Climbing, big-wall, Yosemite, National Park, Free Climbing.
Give people credit where credit is due. Don’t steal peoples images, attribute quotes with a link, and in general be a good web citizen.
There are several ways of inserting images into WordPress, and we encourage them all since photos make posts more interesting. You are welcome to upload your photos here or host them somewhere else on the web. Writers have the ability to insert a single image, create a photo gallery, or even use the specialized gallery for photographic series. To use the specialize gallery, simply select the Custom Field “Photographer” in the name section, and enter the number “1″ in Value section underneath the post editor.
Possibly the only thing better than photos! Simply click “HTML” next to the “Visual” part of the post editor, then paste the code from Youtube, Vimeo, etc. The hardest part is changing the width and height attributes on the videos, we recommend 650 pixels wide, and it usually needs to be done in two places. See below:
<object width=”650” height=”500“><param name=”movie” value=”http://www.youtube.com/v/5IgM_8mcSA4?fs=1&hl=en_US”></param><param name=”allowFullScreen” value=”true”></param><param name=”allowscriptaccess” value=”always”></param><embed src=”http://www.youtube.com/v/5IgM_8mcSA4?fs=1&hl=en_US” type=”application/x-shockwave-flash” allowscriptaccess=”always” allowfullscreen=”true” width=”650” height=”500“></embed></object>
Feel free to find the best height for your video, and remember extra commentary rocks too.
We’d like to get to know you, but don’t need your social or bra size. To edit your personal details that will be displayed below your post(s), click on the Users >> Your Profile link. You may add your web site, a bio paragraph or two, and social networking links so other authors and readers can connect with you. However, all we require is a name and photo, and no – they don’t even have to be yours.