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Thread: About.com?

  1. #1001
    hanshuang
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    Hello,I am a Chinese student.And my English is not very well.The day before yestoday I came across here when I was surffing the INT.I am very glad to make friends with all of you.Aha,I will study English hard so that I can speak Englishi fluently. *-*

  2. #1002
    Writing for My Life sandymae2000's Avatar
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    Hi Cvernonpal:

    The blog uses a different format than most of the templates. To insert a photo in the blog, first make sure that the photo is no larger than 170 pixels on the longest side (use photoshop, Microsoft Image editor, or other similar program). Then upload the image into the About photo management system (since you got a photo to work in another page, I'm assuming you know how to do this). Next, use this format to insert the photo on the blog:

    <img src="YOUR PHOTO URL" hspace="5" align="LEFT or RIGHT">

    Obviously, insert your photo's url (from the About image management page) and whether you want the photo left or right justified.

    Make sure to put a photo credit line (even if it's your own) at the bottom of the blog.

    Hope this helps. Feel free to PM me if you have questions.

    Good luck with prep.

    Sandy

  3. #1003
    Cvernon, to insert a photo credit into the blog, what I usually do is down at the bottom of the blog post I skip a space and add:

    (Image &copy; Getty Images)

    That &copy; will make the copyright symbol, and then you just place a credit in there for the owner of the photo. Make sure you do this for every image, including stuff that's your own creation.

  4. #1004
    Last of a Dying Breed popmuze's Avatar
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    Question here: About how often do the About people add to their list of suggested topics?

  5. #1005
    Doing Pirate things... Tifferbugz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by popmuze View Post
    Question here: About how often do the About people add to their list of suggested topics?
    I'm not sure exactly but there seem to be new topics every couple of weeks.
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  6. #1006
    I wonder if current guides can share (to the extent allowed by a NDA) next steps after you've graduated from prep and any tips you have on getting started.

    I'm still waiting for my final review and so I'm interested, but I thought it might be fun for other folks who are in "the process" as well. Plus it gives us something new to talk about. =}

    Christy

  7. #1007
    practical experience, FTW
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    I put the photo credit under the picture like this - http://sanantonio.about.com/b/a/000403.htm

    It takes a little html to do it that way. But if you want to know how to do it, you can email me and I'll give you txt file with the coding. I would post it here, but it won't show up right on the forum.
    Kori Ellis

  8. #1008
    practical experience, FTW
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    Quote Originally Posted by MoreThanMommy View Post
    I wonder if current guides can share (to the extent allowed by a NDA) next steps after you've graduated from prep and any tips you have on getting started.

    I'm still waiting for my final review and so I'm interested, but I thought it might be fun for other folks who are in "the process" as well. Plus it gives us something new to talk about. =}

    Christy
    After graduating you get 10 days to get your site ready to go live. You can add extra content, links, etc to get it prepared. When you go live, you will also be added to email list of new guides, which is invaluable. You learn so much from the other guides going through the process. You are led by the new guide editor and they give you advice, feedback, etc. After 3 (or so) months, you get reviewed and moved off the new guide email list.

    I actually miss it because I thought I learned a lot on the list.
    Kori Ellis

  9. #1009
    There's a newlywed topic on there for anyone who feels qualified. The irony is that there is one other topic that I desperately wanted (rubber stamping), but it has been filled for awhile now. Now that I've been hired, the other topic opened up! =} I'm very happy with the topic I've got, but I thought it was just sort of funny.

  10. #1010
    Quote Originally Posted by MoreThanMommy View Post
    I wonder if current guides can share (to the extent allowed by a NDA) next steps after you've graduated from prep and any tips you have on getting started.
    In addition to writing your own great content, search the rest of About.com for potential links.

    When you're setting up your categories, obviously you're not going to be able to fill up every single thing you need with original content in ten days. However, there may be other pages on About.com that you can link to until you get your own content written. They're big fans of crosslinking within the existing system.

    As an example, one of my pages under Pagan Traditions is the Asatru (without going into a lot of detail, these are the Norse Pagans you see today). As one of my crosslinks in the Asatru profile, I've linked to a page or two on Runes which is actually part of the Alternative Religion page. Similarly, some of my internal links take readers to the Classical Mythology pages for additional information instead of to a page of original content.

    I'm coming up for my three month review in a week or two, so I'm hoping that I've done everything right so far!!

  11. #1011
    figuring it all out
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    Well, now seems as good a time as any to de-lurk on this thread...

    Hello all! I hadn't been around AbsoluteWrite in awhile (used to spend some time on the Playwriting and Blogging boards) but when I was considering getting into freelance non-fiction as well I figured this would be the place to come for suggestions. I found this thread and, long story short, on Friday I start my prep for the Toronto city guide position!

    So mostly, I wanted to de-lurk to give a hearty THANK YOU to everyone who has shared their experiences on this thread. Whether or not I actually get the job, I'm certain I never would have applied if it hadn't been for all the info I found on here.

    And, um, speaking of info... I do have a question that's come up as I prep for prep. I know the first step is submitting your categories, but does that include your sub-categories as well, or is that something you can work out as you go?

    Thanks again for all the help so far (even if you didn't know I was reading it) and congrats to everyone who's already with About.com.

    Oh, and on the theme of everyones-prep-seems-to-be-happen-at-the-worst-time-possible? Yeah, I'm moving to a new apartment mid-prep. It's going to be wacky.
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  12. #1012
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    ya know, I didn't ever have any sub categories. Don't know if I will, either. Maybe as my site is built up...

  13. #1013
    Just hitting send CatMuse33's Avatar
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    I'm not sure if this belongs here...but...

    Some people may remember i went through Prep for Paintball several months ago, and didn't get it. I wasn't even beaten out for the job, they said they were going to "keep looking for a guide."

    Well, a close friend of mine and one of the key people in a new paintball trade association is looking for content to fill the association's website--stuff targeted at beginners!!

    So... rather than be completely self-centered and boast about this lucky opportunity, I want to encourage everyone who has failed prep to look around... You have all this great content. Can articles be expanded? Altered? Pitched as they are? To magazines? Other websites? There's a whole world out there that covers your topic and your articles are valuable to someone, even if About.com didn't feel it was just right for them.

    Alternately, you may think about starting a blog on your topic and using some of the articles there. Don't let those two weeks of your life go to waste!

    (Okay, maybe this is obvious, but I bet a lot of people were so burnt out after prep, they didn't want to look at the stories again. The time is now. Dust 'em off and send 'em out!)

    Dawn

  14. #1014
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Wink Thanks for the help

    Thanks PattiTheWicked, kewrite and sandymae2000 for the help with adding a photo to the blog.

    Cheril

  15. #1015
    practical experience, FTW wolflady26's Avatar
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    Greasy Spoon, congratulations on being accepted for Prep! If you have subcategories, I would send them over in the outline, BUT be aware that they usually discourage subcategories at the beginning of your site. They would rather have fully fleshed out categories when you start out than a lot of anemic subcategories with just a small bit of content in them. It's difficult to get enough content in the given time period for the main categories already.

    The other thing is that if you do get accepted, you might find your site growing in different ways than you anticipate once you start getting reader feedback. Holding off on the subcategories lets you see what brings in the readers and what doesn't so that you can grow your site in the most profitable way.

    So use subcategories sparingly, and avoid them unless they're really necessary at this stage.

    Good luck!

  16. #1016
    practical experience, FTW
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    Just for the record, I'd like to nominate this thread as AW's "Most Helpful" and "Most Friendly." You folks are great!

    Greasy Spoon, we can be in Prep agony together...good luck on your topic! I've always wanted to visit Toronto.

    Thanks, everyone, in advance for the photo info. I am sure I will need it for Prep.
    About.com Guide to Senior Travel
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  17. #1017
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    tangent: i heart toronto! And, catmuse: this is absolutely correct: "I bet a lot of people were so burnt out after prep, they didn't want to look at the stories again"

  18. #1018
    figuring it all out kiyasmom's Avatar
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    Good luck with prep, Greasy Spoon! I'm sure you'll do great; move and all! I'll come visit your site for tourist information. I'd like for my family to visit Toronto next summer. (I live in NY and it really is a hop-skip-and-a-jump) but coordinating even a weekend trip for a family of six is more difficult than you know.

  19. #1019
    Going through the motions DTNg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MoreThanMommy View Post
    There's a newlywed topic on there for anyone who feels qualified. The irony is that there is one other topic that I desperately wanted (rubber stamping), but it has been filled for awhile now. Now that I've been hired, the other topic opened up! =} I'm very happy with the topic I've got, but I thought it was just sort of funny.
    I know exactly what you mean. I eyed the frugal living topic for years and as soon as I landed Weblogs, frugal living opened up.
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  20. #1020
    Bitten with the writing bug thursdayb's Avatar
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    I just got the email notifying that I start prep for 'Money in Your 20s' next week. I'm so excited!
    thursdaybram.com

    You must keep sending work out; you must never let a manuscript do nothing but eat its head off in a drawer. You send that work out again and again, while you're working on another one. If you have talent, you will receive some measure of success - but only if you persist.
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  21. #1021
    Good luck to everyone in/entering prep. I keep losing track - we need a chart somewhere!

    My mentor had also told me to not spend time on sub-cats during prep.

    And thanks for the post-prep info. I finished prep over a month ago and I'm still waiting for my final review so I'm eager to go to the next step.

    =}

  22. #1022
    figuring it all out
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    Quote Originally Posted by thursdayb View Post
    I just got the email notifying that I start prep for 'Money in Your 20s' next week. I'm so excited!
    Congrats! OMG, I would love (love, love) to have that topic! I love my topic, too, though. Good luck in Prep.

    Good luck to NancyP, Greasy Spoon, and any others who are in Prep now too.
    About.com Guide to Credit/Debt Management

  23. #1023
    figuring it all out
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    Quote Originally Posted by NancyP View Post
    Just for the record, I'd like to nominate this thread as AW's "Most Helpful" and "Most Friendly." You folks are great!
    I'd like to second that nomination!

    Thanks GardenWallPubs, WolfLady26 and MoreThanMommy for the answers on sub-categories. It's a relief to know they don't expect us to plan THAT far ahead.

    And thanks to everyone for the well-wishes - both for me and Toronto! Hopefully I'll be the one giving you all suggestions for your next visit.

    Congrats thursdayb! That sounds like an exciting topic (and one I should read when it goes live).

    Cheers all.
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  24. #1024
    Got my final review this afternoon. Mostly small comments. Unfortunately (for someone writing about computers), I always forget to capitalize "Internet." I have a bunch of those to change! I'm so excited for my site to go live!

    So, I have to agree that there is some sort of Murphy's Law of About.com prep. The first time I went through prep, the last weekend coincided with my brother-in-law's wedding. The whole weekend was booked. This time wasn't quite as bad, but the last weekend was my daughter's "Welcome" party and I spent the whole weekend cooking and cleaning. You just have to do what you can when you can and hope for the best (and that everyone else also has a personal life!)

  25. #1025
    practical experience, FTW
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    I must say that I am simply prepping for prep right now (it officially starts Friday) and I am burned out already! I haven't even finished preparing my "Things You Will Need to Complete in Prep" list. Yikes!

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