Want to add an item to your portfolio? Perhaps this member's journey can help you.
|Home is where the heart is, but after "Wandering through Writing.Com" for a while, my feet were getting tired. The door marked, Writing seemed like my best bet for a rest. After all, it's hard to write when you're walking the halls. Getting excited about what was to come, I opened the door a bit and peeked through the crack. My eyes opened wide as I saw the blinking lights around the room. There were signs with arrows pointing to different areas of the room, Writing: Non-Interactive, Writing: Interactive, Writing: Visual Aids, Writing: Audio Aids, and Writing: Organization.
Just as my hopes sank for a seat to rest my weary legs, I saw a moving walkway under each sign. Before I could go in any direction, darkin grabbed my arm and pulled me to the side of the room.
"You look lost," she said. I opened my mouth to respond, but before I could make a sound, she spoke again, "You don't wanna stand in the middle of the room like that. It's a busy place and half these people have their heads buried in a book. You're likely to be run over that way! Now where were you looking to go? Hmm?"
I was mesmerized by her twitching tail, but forced myself to look away and answer her question. "I don't know. I have a story to tell and I want to write it down, but I'm not sure where I should go. This place is huge!"
"Yes, it can be confusing for newbies; that's what we call our new users around these parts. We love our newbies!" she said, a big smile on her little squirrelly face.
I blinked, unsure whether she expected a response and wondering if she was a little off her rocker. Apparently, she didn't expect a response because she went on after a pause for breath, "Ok, so you have a story to tell. You probably want to create a Static Item. These are the most popular item types on Writing.Com. This is where you would add a story, poem or article to your portfolio in order to share it with everyone."
"Wait, wait, wait," I said. "I'm not sure I want to share this story with the entire Internet!"
She patted my hand and smiled, "Well that's ok too. You can select who you'd like to give access to your story when you add it to your portfolio. Go ahead and step onto the moving sidewalk under the Static Item sign and a virtual presentation will walk you through the steps. If you ever have a question, pause the sidewalk by hitting one of the colored buttons on the remote. If you have a general question about writing, press the yellow button. That will take you to "Writing.Com General Discussion" where you can post a question for other members on the site. The blue button is for help with non-technical questions about writing and the site. It will take you to "Non-Technical Support Forum" . If something on the site doesn't seem to be functioning properly for you, hit the red button, which will deposit you in "Technical Support Forum" . Now get going and enjoy the tour. I have other newbies to rescue!"
Despite the oddity of receiving instructions from a squirrel, I decided she wasn't nuts and so I stepped onto the Static Item moving sidewalk. A chair came out of nowhere and swept me off my feet. It was nice to be seated and I leaned forward, anxious for the virtual tour. A screen lit up in front of me and The StoryMaster appeared. "Hello, and welcome to Writing.Com!" he boomed. I reached for the volume on the remote so as not to be deafened by his thunderous tone.
"I am The StoryMaster and I am delighted that you've decided to join the site. Most new users are anxious to post their writing for others to see so I've made it my personal mission to help them in this task. This virtual tour is a beta version so there may be some bugs, but we've provided you with a place to report any infestations, "Bug Reporting" . I don't think you'll need it, but just in case, hit the button with the bug on it for assistance."
I waited as he paused to take a sip of water and cleared his throat. "Now, after you click on Static Item, a new page opens. This page is divided into sections and allows you to enter the following information:
Section 1: Enter the title of your story here, then select an area to file the item in your portfolio. For your first item, your only option in this area will be My Portfolio. Now use the dropbox to select the type of item you are adding. In your case, darkin tells me that you want to add a story, so you would select Short Story. Now type in a description that will draw the reader in and make them want to read your story. The final area in this section is the Intro Rating. The default is E-rated, meaning the title and description you typed are appropriate for everyone, but make sure you read "Content Rating System (CRS)" for a clear definition of the ratings.
Section 2: First you select the content rating for the item itself, using the link above as guidance. This is the area where you decide who you want to be able to view the story. Make public, allow EVERYONE! puts it out on the Internet for the world to see. This is fine if you're into sharing, but if you want to restrict access a bit, you might select one of the other options. You can make the item private and still share with others by assigning a passkey. "Passkeys" will walk you through that process. Group access doesn't apply right now since you don't belong to any groups, but later on, you might want to use that option.
Section 3: Here's where we get into the good stuff. By selecting genres and keywords, you allow others to find your item in searches. So make sure you select the appropriate genre!
I interrupted him at this point, "How do I know which one to choose? There are so many!"
"Well, think about what you would file it under if you had a choice. You said it is a scary story about a family ghost, right? Then maybe horror, ghost, and biographical would be good selections."
I didn't remember saying any such thing, but he was right so I made a note to use those as my genres and another note that The StoryMaster could read minds...
Section 4: Now this is the area that you've been waiting for... this is where you type your story! Or you can copy it from a word processing program and paste it into this box. We actually recommend that because computers are known to be finicky and we'd hate for you to type for hours only to lose your story when the Internet connection goes down.
Section 5: Now we're coming to the end. This area allows you to set preferences for formating and reviewing. Look over this area at your leisure. It's not required so you can skip it for now since I know you're anxious to get writing.
Section 6: You've reached the finish line! The copyright information and site policy is linked from this area. Many questions asked by new members about posting their writing online can be answered by following the links to "Writing.Com Copyright Policy" . After you've filled out all the other sections, click on one of the save options. If you are typing directly into the item box, you might want to click Save and Edit a few times as you write. "
After going through the sections, he leaned back into his virtual chair and nodded his head. The sidewalk came to an end and the chair tilted me into a standing position. I took that as my cue to leave and turned to wave, but The StoryMaster was already gone. I figured he was off on another tour and in any case, I was standing in front of a door with a sign stating NewUser622. Excited, I opened the door and went in to start adding to my portfolio.