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Several people have asked me how they could submit articles to this website in our Articles section. I figured it was time that I got around to penning a forum topic on exactly how to author and upload or submit an article to this website. So let's get started!
Step 1: Submission Link, Starting the Process
The first step is to click the link in the Articles section that says "Submit Articles". You can either do this from the Article home page shown in the following screen capture, or from any category that you are viewing.
Step 2: Choosing a Category
If you are already in a category when you click the Submit Articles link it will pre-choose that category for you from the drop down list and you only need to click the Submit button. If not, you will be given the entire category list drop down as shown in the following photo. You MUST select the appropriate category from the drop down list and then click the Submit button to go on to the next step.
Step 3: Authoring the Article
Authoring an article is a little different from authoring a message in the forums but not a lot, you start with plain text boxes and some buttons, first let's look at the article submission form and then we'll examine each item on the form.
(For a Full Size View of this Form Click Here)
Starting at the top notice that your username has been filled in for you as well as the category that you've chosen. If either of those is incorrect, please go back and start over.
Product Manufacturer: Please fill in whomever makes the product you are authoring an article about. This could be something like "Porsche" or "Bilstein" if it is a car part of modification.
Product Model Name: Please fill in the name of the particular item, for example if we had chosen Porsche for the Manufacturer maybe the part is the factory sports exhaust so you'd enter "Sports Exhaust" or something similar.
Product Images: Next there are 15 boxes available for the direct upload of images of the product from your computer to the website. I always suggest uploading at least 1 photo here because it will show up in the category and item index next to your article and make your article show up on the Articles section home page under recent articles. Failure to upload even 1 photo here may mean that you article is seen and read by a lot fewer people. Extra Tip: Additionally if you upload your photos here and simply enter some placeholder text in the article body and submit your article, then if you go back and edit you can examine the photos to see what the URL/Link is to go directly to the photo which you could then use in the subsequent body of the article.
Step 3a - Uploading Pictures of Product
To upload anywhere from 1 to 15 photos of the item that will appear in the index and in the header of your article simply click the Browse button which will cause your computer to pop up a directory listing of your computer. Navigate to where the photos are and select the one you want to upload and click the Open or OK button as shown in this following screen capture:
Repeat this process for up to 15 photos. I recommend that your photos be no larger than 1600x1200 if you are going to upload multiple photos, otherwise the submission process "could" time out. It is OK if the photos you upload directly are also ones that you want to use in the body of your article. I again encourage you to upload at least one photo using this process. If the submission of your article fails, 99% of the time it is because people try to upload 15 photos that are all huge in size.
Step 3b - Article Body
The Article Body is the main area where you type in your Article. This can be text, text with forum codes such as bold and you can also include photos inline using two different methods.
Plain Text - This will be the bulk of your article, just typing away gives you good ole plain text.
WYSIWYG Editor - We now have a WYSIWYG EDITOR for Article submissions! Woot! It will let you add all sort of items into your article and is very similar to the editor found in the forum.
Forum Codes - You can still use any of the markup codes used in the forum in your article as well.
Inline Images - People want to see what you are doing, so your article is likely to have or need inline images. You type some text, insert an image (much as I am doing in this forum posting) and then continue on with more text. There are 3 ways to insert images into the Article Body.
1) Use the Image Insert button in the WYSIWYG editor bar, it looks like a Mountain and Sun and is next to the Chain Link that is used for entering URL links
2) Manually typing the image tags before and after a valid image URL. (For example the URL of one of the 15 photos you could upload with the buttons above after examining the output)
3) Copy/Pasting the BB Code from a Gallery photo into the Article Body.
I tend to prefer #1 or #3 since I want the photos to "live" in the Gallery anyway. As a refresher on how to upload photos to our Gallery see this message topic: Planet-9.com Gallery Upload Instructions
Here is a screen capture that explains in more detail in the Article Body how to use either method 2 or 3 to insert an inline image.
Here is another screen capture that shows me looking at a photo in the Articles section of the Gallery and copying the BB Code to be used back in the Article Body via copy/paste.
Please note that you can choose either to use the code that will produce a thumbnail image with link to the original by selecting that BBCode option, or you can select the option to use the larger size image by selecting that BBCode option, in the image above I have highlighted the larger photo option and both options are shown inside a red box I drew around them. Both are in the IMAGE CODE section when looking at any photo in our Gallery.
There are 2 Text Entry boxes for additional information related to the Article you are submitting:
1) Sponsor Website: - If the item you are covering is from one of our sponsors this is where you can enter a link to their website for more information. If not a sponsor just put N/A in the box.
2) Link to Forum Topic - Sometimes you may be discussing this item in a DIY topic or group buy topic etc. in the forum. In order to reference the discussion in the forum you can enter a link to the topic in this box. Otherwise enter N/A
Notice in the next screen capture that I have pasted in the BB Code from the gallery photo.
At this point after you have finished typing in all the text and including all the photos you have one more option before submitting your article. You can choose to have any responses to your article emailed to you. This is a good method to alert you that other members may have compliments, problems with, or questions about the article you submitted. After selecting Yes or No then click the Submit button at the bottom of the form.
Please note that if you have chosen to upload 15 photos it may take a little while until you get the article confirmation message.
Step 4 - Editing an Article
What if you make a mistake? What if you submitted an article and later noticed an error and want to fix it? That's easy, simply go to your Article and click the "Product Options" link for a drop down menu at the top right of any Article and then select the Edit Article link shown in the next photo. You will be taken back to your article using the editor form you originally used to submit the article and you can make any changes and submit again and your article will be updated. You can edit an article multiple times, and as mentioned previously if you want to do your photo uploading first, simply insert some text as a placeholder in the article body, submit the article, then go back and edit it to fully craft the article and have the photos available to link to.
There you go, now you should have everything you need to be able to submit a new article to our Articles section of the website!