Writer's Etiquette

TheWritersWorkshop.net
TheWritersWorkshop.net

If it Weren't for Reading

A mentor of mine once said: "Where would you be if it weren't for reading? You can't get so caught up in your own writing that you forget to read." At that time I was focusing on completing my first novel (that I've been working on since I was 10!) and that's all I wanted to do; I wanted to complete that novel and publish it--that was before I was made aware of how hard publishing is... but that's another story.

Where would I be if it weren't for my reading? That's a good question. We don't learn to write first, do we? We learn to recognize letters, to read letters. But this Hub is not about writing vs reading, it's about writer's etiquette.

Yes, "writer's etiquette"; requirements of social behavior for writers; an accepted code that should be followed by all writers.

Google Images
Google Images

Writer's Code of Conduct

Read unto others as you would have them read onto you. Simply put, if you want people to read your work, you need to first read other people's work.

Let's begin in a general sense. Reading other works not only improves your writing style but it gives you ideas. Without the sharing of ideas in every aspect, what would the world be? How would anything have been invented if people didn't share ideas? Ideas is what makes the world go 'round!

Reading exercises your mind, your intellect. It teaches you new things. Face it, you don't know everything. We wish we have all the knowledge in the world, but we don't. We may be well-rounded and very knowledgeable but not omniscient.

Now let's get back to the code--read unto others as you would have them read unto you. You expect people to read your writings but you don't take the time to read other people's work? As writers, it's hard sometimes to come out of our own word of imagination (especially for fiction writers) and into someone else's world. We need to read other people's work if we want other people to read our work. Think of it as a kind of "writing Karma." You give what you get or you get what you give.

This code applies especially to writing and blogging communities such as HubPages. It's important that we read other people's writings. People take time to write, not for it to occupy space on the internet but so that people could read it.

Polls Are You Friends

On HubPages and other blog sites, writers put polls to get an idea of what their readers think about their writings. For example, in some of writings people may ask a question such as: "Would you like to read more?" and I'm sure they would appreciate a response because it helps them realize when they need to improve their Hubs or when their Hubs are just right.

Quizzes are also your friends. Writers create quizzes for a reason; perhaps to ensure that the readers have understand what was written. If you don't have time to take the quiz at the moment, you can always return and complete it. It's just courtesy.

Comments Among Us

The comment capsule and the vote up/vote down capsules are there on the pages for a reason, not for decoration. For me, after reading a Hub that I enjoyed or at least found interesting, it's natural to comment. Even if you're commenting just to say "Good Hub" or "Interesting", do so.

I know that, personally, I look forward to comments. When I log onto HubPages and see a number beside comments, I get so excited. I love reading what my writers have to say to me. If, as a reader, you do not like what you have read and if you have constructive criticism, I feel that it's alright to contact the writer privately. I mean, don't insult the writer, don't badger them; simple corrections or suggestions would suffice. I received a correction one from a Hubber and I was so grateful because I was able to correct my mistake.

I'm not perfect. I don't always comment on people's writings but I try my best to. Commenting is proof that you've read the Hub and that you had some interest in it.

That being said, I think it's also important for the Hubber to respond to their readers' comments. I always respond to my readers' comments. I also look forward to responses from comments I've made.

Am I being picky? I hope not.

Google Images
Google Images

Be Polite

Basically, being polite on HubPages is easy:

  1. Follow the writers' code of conduct (read others' work)
  2. Take polls/quizzes
  3. Comment and vote up
  4. Follow and leave fan mail
  5. BE NICE--don't leave rude comments and degrade a Hubber's writing

Celebrities Amongst Us

I love the fan mail feature on HubPages. It kind of gives you the impression that you're a celebrity. Of course, there are legitimate writers on HubPages but I'm taking about us normal people.

To be honest, when it comes to following a Hubber who's following me, I don't always do that. I feel bad sometimes when I realize that the Hubber has no Hubs which I'm interested in. Still, I always make sure to read at least one of the Hubs and comment. You can find something your interested in, in any Hub, no matter what the topic. There's no loss commenting on at least one Hub. You may not be interested in the Hub but you still learn something. I guess I've just made another code of conduct: "follow others as you'll have them follow you" or at least "comment on others because you'll want comments too."

Help Yourself

By reading and commenting on other Huibbers' writings, you help yourself. How? Well, first there's recognition. The Hubber you've commented on will most likely be interested in finding out who you are. That way, you get a potential follower and fan. Also, other Hubbers who comment on the reading you commented on will recognize you. So, taking time to comment is not just beneficial to the Hubber but to you as well. Commenting can help boost traffic to your Hubs.

It's Not Just Me

I'm just a new edition to Hubbers hubbing about hubbing etiquette. Therefore, I come to the conclusion that many other people feel the same way I do about commenting and other such courteous acts on HubPages. I'm just a novice on HubPages so if you don't believe me, check out the other Hubs below (remember to rate and comment these wonderful Hubbers):

By Dobson: http://hubpages.com/hub/Hub-Pages-Ettiquette

More by this Author


Comments 58 comments

marvalousnj profile image

marvalousnj 6 years ago from Central Jersey USA

Nice!!!!


ericvonjed 6 years ago

I am so grateful I found Hub Pages, it gives me more good things to read. It helps me to remember that a simile is like a mataphore. And occasionally, I'll re-read a Jane Austen novel.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Yay! Comments! Heehee

Thanks, marvalous.

ericvonjed, I'm grateful I found HubPages too. I love it. I love reading other people's work. It does help you remember a lot of things. I've learned quite a lot in the past 3 weeks. Thanks for commenting.


tinamarie9884 6 years ago

Very nicely said


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks,Tina. I hoped it would be received kindly.


Erin Rooney profile image

Erin Rooney 6 years ago from Arcata, California

I really love this. You have an elegant way with words, I can't wait to read more of your stuff. I didn't comment on it because I saw this and was curious, but the Thespian Lane stories are beautiful. I'm excited to read more!


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thank you, Erin. That really means a lot to me. I hope you enjoy the Thespian Lane serial.


Shil1978 profile image

Shil1978 6 years ago

Kim, you are absolutely right! Reading the works of others is essential. It not only helps you, but means a lot to the the person whose hub you've read and commented upon!!

It gives them valuable feedback, which in turn can contribute towards them becoming better writers. Personally, you can learn quite a number of things. I've learnt so many things here by doing so. I did learn something new from your previous hub on pseudocyesis!!

Thanks for reminding us of the importance of commenting Kim. A great reminder hub :)


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks, Shil. Yes, I've learned a lot on HubPages from other peoples' writings as well. Oh, and I'm glad you learned something about pseudocyesis from my Hub. :)

Thanks for your comment.


John B Badd profile image

John B Badd 6 years ago from Saint Louis, MO

Great hub.

I have found many great hubs here just from clicking on the people who commented on my pages and following them. I have also found some great fans just by comminting on others hubs. So I think your adivice is very sound.

One cool tool I try to use at least once or twice a week is the HubHopper tool http://hubpages.com/hop/ . I have found some great hubs this way also.


Polly C profile image

Polly C 6 years ago from UK

Hi kaltopsyd - a great hub, highlighting some very true points. I think the 'writer's etiquette' is very important, if only to enhance and make more enjoyable the whole experience of writing on hubpages. After all, if no one commented on anyone else's hubs, then it would be a rather lonely and isolating state of affairs!

Personally, I love reading other hubber's hubs and leaving comments, though I will admit that I would do it more if I had more time. Often, I see someone has written a hub that really interests me, yet I don't have time to read it, especially if it is long, so I try to come back later. (As I think I might have told you, I have a two year old at home so anything I want to concentrate on often has to wait!)

The writer's etiquette that you describe can really boost the moral of the authors and inspire them to do more, and I think that is the most beneficial thing.

Anyway, I will await your prompt reply (lol!)


Rebecca E. profile image

Rebecca E. 6 years ago from Canada

thanks so much for this hub, it is great and well written, keep up the great work, thanks so much for the mention I am honoured for it!


SwanofWar profile image

SwanofWar 6 years ago from In My Imagination

I completely agree. We writers need to stick together to achieve our goals and dreams. None of us should have to do this alone.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Whew! I'm surprised by the amount of comments on this Hub alone. :) Now for the responses:

John - I used to HubHopper tool for the first time the other day. I like it very much. It helped me find new Hubbers to follow. Very interesting indeed.

Polly - Yes, here's my prompt response (hehe). I understand your limited time having a two year old. I was trying to read something yesterday and my 4-year-old godsister kept yapping away. *sigh* I had to read it late when she went to bed. So I understand.

Rebecca - Your Hub was great. I HAD to mention it. :)

SwanofWar - Yes, we writers need to stick together! I like that.

Thank you all for commenting. I had fun reading and responding.


thevoice profile image

thevoice 6 years ago from carthage ill

terrific fine quality read write thanks


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thank you, voice!


Springboard profile image

Springboard 6 years ago from Wisconsin

Reading is a very important tool for any writer. All great writers, for one thing, are also avid readers themselves, and many of them have strong influences in their childhoods and claim to have had their imaginations shaped by the books they read as a child. Stephen King talks often about this often in his own forewards (which are fun to read in and of themselves) to his books.

On the notes regarding celebrity and comments, both are fun in their own right. Who doesn't want to be king for a day? :)

It's nice to see that a writing effort gets a read here and there, and that someone cares enough to leave something of encouragement (or positive critique) behind. It's validating. And that validation is reward.

You may be new here, but you definitely have the right idea already. Keep on hubbing, and a belated welcome aboard to you.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks for your wonderful comment, Springboard! Also thanks for the welcome and the encouragement. It is much appreciated!


thelurkingmerchan profile image

thelurkingmerchan 6 years ago from San Diego

Excellent Hub! We definitely need to do our best to support our fellow writers.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

lurkingmerchan, I agree. Without support I don't think I would make it on HubPages.


Duchess OBlunt 6 years ago

There is one thing that there is never too much of, and that is people sharing how to do things right! You've done a pretty good job of it kaltopsyd.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Your Grace, I thank you. :)


green tea-cher profile image

green tea-cher 6 years ago

There are so many good points in this hub. I too look so forward to comments - that is what helps me grow as a writer. Whether it is the topic or how well it is written, feedback is good for us. I have learned a lot from reading other writers' hubs and commenting has definitely boosted my traffic. Thanks for the tips. Very Useful.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Hello, green tea-cher, nice to see you again! :) I look forward to comments to. Very much! I agree what it helps people to grow as writers. Thanks for commenting!


Lady_E profile image

Lady_E 6 years ago from London, UK

Thanks for this Hub. I found it useful.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Lady_E.


Rismayanti profile image

Rismayanti 6 years ago from Tropical Island

wonderfull tips, will be a fan


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks for commenting and being a fan, Rismayanti!


Marijana Reynders 6 years ago

You are really such a wise person and you never cease to impress. Wonderful article with absolute valid statements and suggestions. Hope your book in the making from age 10 will soon see the light ... it can only be good judging by your high standard of work on hubpages. Well done.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks so much Marijana. Your comments are always greatly appreciated. You are very encouraging.


Freya Cesare profile image

Freya Cesare 6 years ago from Borneo Island, Indonesia

It is honest review on what we have here in Hubpages and how this community being run. I agree on most of them, but too bad, not all Hubbers want to following this. I did seen many rude comments, even than inside the Hubs, it is more common on forum. I think we have to understand that not all people know how to become polite. :(


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Hello, Freya. I like they way you put that (not all people know how to be polite). That is so true. Thanks for your comment.


dallas93444 profile image

dallas93444 6 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

Writer's Code of Conduct, as a "newbie," I am discovering what this means. I am reading lots of other author's writing. It imp;roves my own mind. Great hub! Thanks for sharing...


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Hi, dallas. It's fun reading other author's writings here on HubPages. It certainly does improve one's mind. Thank you for commenting!


Crazywriterchik profile image

Crazywriterchik 6 years ago from San Diego, CA

This is a very well written Hub.. very useful thank you. Definitely gave me some food for thought.

Everyone loves a good comment... if for no other reason than knowing that someone took the time to read what you wrote and say whether they liked it or not... plus the warm fuzzy feeling you get in your stomach when you find out that a comment has been made on a piece that you put some time and effort into writing. It just makes ya feel good :D


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Comments definitely make you feel good. For example, I just logged on and saw a little (1) next to "comments". Then I found that YOU have commented! haha. Well, thanks for giving me that warm fuzzy feeling. I'm glad my Hub gave you some food for thought. Thanks for commenting!


blaise25 profile image

blaise25 6 years ago from close to you...

Great hub, it's worth reading. HP is a pretty community, isn't it :)


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks, blaise! Yes HP is a pretty community! :) I love it here!


oogiesmash profile image

oogiesmash 6 years ago from Fayetteville, AR

Hey thanks for the great advice. It's nice to find a great community atmosphere here and I appreciate the insight.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks, oogiesmash. This community is awesome! Thanks for your comment!


daisyjae profile image

daisyjae 6 years ago from Canada

Awesome hub. I think you are right, treat others how you want to be treated.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thank you very much, daisyjae. I love your profile picture, by the way. Cute kitty! Thanks for commenting!


meow48 profile image

meow48 6 years ago from usa

well, i finally woke up enough to check out your writing and thankyou for writing this. i will hold it as my montra on this site. take care.


crazybeanrider profile image

crazybeanrider 6 years ago from Washington MI

So true and and you have written it in such an elegant manner everyone can understand. I enjoy reading what people are writing about as much as I enjoy getting comments. Well done!


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thank you for stopping by to read my Hubs, meow48. I appreciate it!

Thank you, crazybeanrider for commenting. So you enjoy getting comments too? I don't see why anyone won't. Thanks for reading!


fred allen profile image

fred allen 6 years ago from Myrtle Beach SC

Very well done! I agree COMPLETELY!


fred allen profile image

fred allen 6 years ago from Myrtle Beach SC

P.S. Rated up and useful!


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Thanks for agreeing with me and for rating, Fred!


Christoph Reilly profile image

Christoph Reilly 6 years ago from St. Louis

Oh boy, I was going to make a joke but decided it would be rude, i.e., not following writer's etiquette. LOL. You are most assuredly correct, K. I was just speaking (so to speak) with a hubber earlier today about how comments (or letters or emails for that matter) have the power to either lift us up - to make our day - or to send us into a funk full of bad vibes. People should follow the golden rule. That being said, I must bid adieu. I bow to you. (Ain't I polite? LOL)


Jack Crockett profile image

Jack Crockett 6 years ago from Columbia, Missouri

I couldn't agree more. As someone who writes on several sites, I see the importance of getting out in the community and commenting on other's work. Unless criticism is specifically requested, I don't do it. You never know who is exactly on the other side of that article or story. Voted up!

P.S. And an "Awesome" too!


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Yes, Chris! You are most polite. Such a gentleman! :-) You're absolutely right about how comments can lift us up or 'sen us into a funk'. That's so true!


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

I'm with you on that whole criticism without request thing, Jack. I don't like public criticism directly on Hubs (unless it's requested). I think that should be a personal thing - email, perhaps. Thanks for the ratings!


ACSutliff profile image

ACSutliff 6 years ago

I wish this had been the first hub I ever read. You are right in what you say about private criticism. Your thoughts are rather original, but have so much truth, that I'm sure most people would definitely agree. When I first started writing here, I was worried that people would be awful to each other the way they are on other online sites I've used. So far, I've been very happy with the community here. My goal is to strive every day to not get so caught up in my writing that I forget my reading. :)


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 6 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

I agree, AC! I'm very happy with the community here. I was also worried about the comments I would receive. I'm sure glad I decided to be brave.

P.S. That's a great goal!


2patricias profile image

2patricias 5 years ago from Sussex by the Sea

This is a well written hub and I entirely agree with the content!

When my daughter was learning to play the cello she had a group lesson every Saturday morning. Every week one of the pupils had to play a brief solo piece, with the others listening. After the performer finished, the other pupils had to each say one positive thing about the performance. Only when that had been done were they allowed to offer constructive criticism.

As you can imagine, this was a lesson that taught more than cello technique.

I like this hub so much that I will add links from one or two of my hubs if you don't mind.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 5 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Hello Patricia!

Wow, I really like that idea -- the positive comment about the cello performance. That is a great idea. That helps in so many area. Thank you for sharing that. Sure, you can add the links. That's very nice. Thank you again!


Tuesdays child profile image

Tuesdays child 5 years ago from In the garden

I stumbled upon Hub Pages a couple of weeks ago and WOW what a find. This is a huge compilation of information!! Thanks for the tips. Can't wait to delve a little deeper into it.


kaltopsyd profile image

kaltopsyd 5 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA Author

Hello Tuesdays child. Thank you so much! I'm glad you find the information useful. :)

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