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RowdyKittens Style Guide

The purpose of this guide is to help guest writers and to save editing time because there are certain style changes that I have make repeatedly. I’d rather avoid that if possible. 🙂

If your guest post doesn’t conform to this style guide, I may refer you to this guide and ask you to revise. It’s possible that I might not publish your guest post if you can’t get it to conform to this guide. I hope you’ll understand!

HTML Code. Too often I need to clean up the html of guest writers who write a post in MS Word. MS Word creates horrible html — it creates custom formatting for each paragraph, which means I need to go in and strip the formatting out of each paragraph. It’s very time consuming. Write your post in a plain text editor that doesn’t have formatting or write it within WordPress itself.

You know you’ve done it incorrectly if you look at the HTML tab in the WordPress editor and find <p> tags before and after each paragraph, usually with some kind of font indicated within the tag. You’ve done it right if paragraphs show up just as plain text within the HTML editor.

Length. I don’t have a guideline for number of words, but you can use my posts on RowdyKittens to guide you. Too short, and you might not be very useful (although there are exceptions). Too long and no one will read you. Make the post as long as the topic needs, no more or less.

Credits. Each post must begin with credits, and I’m particular about how this is done. Here’s the first credit, at the very beginning of the post:

<strong>Editor’s note: This is a guest post from Jane Doe of <a href=”http://janedoe.com”>Jane’s Guide to life</a>.</strong>

You should change it to reflect your name, url and blog title.

Spelling. Please spell-check and read over your text! WordPress has a spell-checker and will underline misspelled words.

Images. Normally, I choose an image to go with the post, but if you’d like to suggest one, that’s useful. Generally, I use images from my Flickr stream or Flickr creative commons photos.

Excessive plugging and advertising. Posts are not published on RowdyKittens to promote you, your blog, your ebook, or your product. They’re published to help readers. You may plug your blog or ebook or other product in the credit at the end of the post. A post with excessive plugging or that reads like an ad for something will not be published.

Note: This guide is based on Leo Babauta’s Zen Habits style guide.

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