Writing the Article (Click to Expand)
The first step in becoming a part of this community is writing your very own article! There is a process that goes into writing the article; however, don’t be intimidated by this, we know you can do it!
To help you through this process, we are providing a step-by-step guide for you! Follow the guide, and we are sure that you will execute the task flawlessly!
Step 1: The Idea
The first step that goes into this process is actually coming up with the idea. Sometimes it is hard to think of something off of the top of your mind, so we would like you to ask yourselves the following questions:
– What are some issues going on in your community that you want to change?
– What are some things that you have experienced which have pushed you to advocate for something?
– What are some issues you strongly believe in changing?
– What inspires you?
Step 2: Research
After coming up with your idea, you will need to do some research. Search reliable websites, and even burrow through some books (old fashioned, I know!) and look for information that supports your viewpoint and your idea. Take an extra step and interview someone facing the challenge in your community or a city official. Try to find as many resources as possible as they strengthen your article. Keep track of all of your resources because it is encouraged to include a bibliography at the end of your article so readers can do further digging, and so that your work is seen as credible and important.
Step 3: Get Writing!
Now, after you have all of your research and a plan of action, it is time to actually write the article. You can write your article in any form you would like to, but we recommend that you use a program such as Google Docs or Microsoft Word to write the article, and then copy paste it into the blog post when creating it. Experiment with fonts and lettering! Make sure that you title the article with a creative or interesting title and have a “By: Your Pen Name” under the title. We recommend having the article in paragraph form but you are free to do any kind of format you would like.
Step 4: Revision
After your article is done, you should send it to a friend or peer for any suggestions or edits. These will help strengthen your writing and will hopefully eliminate any possible errors you may have overlooked. It is always good to receive feedback and constructive criticism so you can make corrections! If you are using Google Docs, set the Sharing mode on “Suggest” so that you can share it with others and get their suggestions that you can approve or ignore. Remember, we are here to support you through the process.
Step 5: Glam it Up!
This part is probably our favorite part! This step is where you polish up your article and upload it to the blog. Amberly will attach a tutorial for uploading so it will not be included here, but you will need to choose a picture to support your article. This image will be displayed as a “thumbnail” for the post, if you will. Make sure that the image is eye-catching and strong so that readers will be more inclined to read your article. In addition, you will need an excerpt or a short introduction of your article along with the picture to pull readers in as well. Have fun with it!
Note – We recommend pexels.com for free, good quality images.
Adding an Art Submission (Click to Expand)
Have you ever heard of the phrase “A picture is worth a thousand words?” Many times people use photograghs and artwork to express themselves and spread awareness on certain issues. This can be referred to as photojournalism or even art journalism. In the Art Gallery section of this website we want to provide an outlook for all of the artists and photographers out there to express themsleves through topics they are passionate about. Follow this step by step guide if you are interested in creating and adding your own submissions to the Art Gallery…
Step 1: The Idea
In order to begin your piece, you will need a topic or issue that you are passionate about. This can be a problem that you see in your life, an inspirational message, or just a subject that you are interested in. Ask yourself these questions to begin brainstorming topics…..
– What are some issues that you see or encounter in your day to day life? What forms of advocacy (if any) do you see already taking place around this issue?
– What message would you want to convey to your audience?
– What are some of your hobbies? What are some topics you are interested in?
Step 2: Choosing a Medium
Now that you have an idea, you need to choose a medium to work with. There are so many different forms and mediums of art. How do you know which one to choose? When choosing an art medium you should keep in mind your level of experience, supplies you have, and what you’re interested in. For those who may not be familiar with art mediums, here are some examples and what you will need for them…
– Watercolor: You will need special paints, brushes, canvas/paper and water to obtain this hazy and translucent effect.
– Acrylic: You will need special paints, brushes, canvas/paper, and water to obtain this solid and opague effect.
– Sketching or Color Pencil: You can use graphite sketching pencils or color pencils to create drawings on normal paper.
– Photography: You can use a camera to capture photographs of real objects and even edit them on different apps/softwares.
– Collage: You can put together a bunch of pictures, words, stickers, textures etc. together to express an idea.
– Pens: You can use special pens to create detailed value drawings or even to add outlines to other media artworks.
– Markers: You can use regular markers to create colored pictures, caligraphy markers to create fancy lettering, or even fine tip markers to add outlines to other media artworks.
Step 3: Complete the Art
Gather your medium and any other supplies you may need to create your art. Keep persisting you’re almost done! Don’t worry if it isn’t perrfect the first time, don’t give up and just remember to persevere through!
Step 4: Description
Now that you have completed your art, the next step is to create a description for your piece. The description should not only describe your piece but also the message you are trying to convey. You can see the current art gallery for several examples of descriptions.
Step 5: Submit Your Piece
In order to submit your piece, click on the ‘Art Gallery’ tab and scroll down until you see the ‘Email Us’ button, that you can use to contact us. In your email, make sure to include a picture of your piece, your description, the title of your art, and a little bit of information about you.
Writing the Email (Click to Expand)
When doing projects such as these, contacting and communicating with other members of the community is paramount, which is why it is important to construct effective emails that get your point across and get what you need in response. For many of your articles, you will need to reach out to other people, other professionals. Here, we will give you a few tips and tricks for writing “good” emails.
1. Always suck up
Being overly nice and sweet, but not fake, is a great tone to set in an email. You want to convey professionalism, but you also want to acknowledge how important and beneficial your contact’s response is to you. Always set the tone as putting them first, as this flattery will go a long way. Trust us, it works.
For example, try talking about how much you would appreciate their response and how much it would mean to you. Try to include why you chose them over others.
You may consider the following example:
“Good Morning, Dr. Brown,
After coming across many of your accomplishments such as your Award for Doctorness and your Certificate of Coolness that you received last year, I was so excited to reach out to you for your opinion on low carb foods. I am writing an article on this topic in a project and I would dearly appreciate your opinion. Your time means a lot to me.”
This of course, needs a LOT more elaboration and such, but the message of the example gets across. You have accomplished the following in these few sentences:
– You have shown that you have done prior research on the contact (“After coming across many of your accomplishments…”)
– You have shown that her credentials mean a lot to you (“… your award for…”)
– You have shown your interest in the contact (“I was so excited to…”)
– You appreciate their opinion and their time (view last sentence)
2. Give Background Information
Chances are that the person you are reaching out to probably has more important things to do than to answer a generic question. This is why you need to provide background information about yourself and the purpose of their respose, so that they know what they need to address. Talking a bit about yourself and your article will show your interest and will make the contact more inclined to help you out. Remember, be genuine. If you are not actually interested in what you are writing, it will show in your email and your contact will recognize it and will therefore be less willing to wase their time in helping some kid do something that they don’t really want to do. The point is, show interest.
3. Be Aiming in the Right Direction
Choose your contacts wisely. Look for professionals who know what they are doing because they will be the ones that will be able to help you the most. Make sure that they are credible and legit, because that is what we are looking for in these articles: credibility. Do not waste your time directing emails towards someone who cannot actually help you as this will just waste time. If you need help, reach out to us!
This resource page is usually going to be in progress and will be undergoing updates and such. If there is something you are unsure about which is not addressed on the current resource page, feel free to email or DM us, we are happy to help! If there is a commonly asked question or a recurring issue, we will address it in an addition to the Resource Page. Thank you!