Advice for Newbie Writers, How to get People to Read Your Articles!
As Your Reader, Who am I?
I, like so many of my favorite fellow writers, not only love to write, but I also love to read interesting articles and such.
I love finding a good recipe for a tasty dish, as much as i love discovering a great Poem or Short Story.
I love to read technical articles on computers and such; as well as articles on this special world of writers that I am a member of.
I love to watch a good, funny, sad, or just entertaining video that provides me with interesting or at least entertaining distraction.
So, I am one of many potential people out here that are waiting to be a part of your audience.
And, of course, you are placing the labors, of your love for writing, out here in the hopes to capture my attention.
And, once captured, you hope I keep reading your fantastic writings.
Otherwise, why be a Writer!
If you are writing for your own entertainment only, then just keep writing, and stuffing the finished works into your old cedar chest in your attic.
Maybe someone will discover them once you are dead? And, you can avoid criticism of your hidden works!
What I have written here, in the following capsules, are; what I consider, the things that a good writer needs to do with each and every article that they write in order to be a success on the web.
Your Profile, Who are You?
Who exactly are you? And ...... Why should I read your work?
That's right, who are you? All Hub writers have a Profile Page!
The Profile page is where you, the writer, tell me, the reader, what you want me to know about you.
Profile pages can include such a wide range of information, from funny and cryptic data, to packed tomes of references, and even very personal biographies.
Writer have a wide range of personalities, and in my opinion, their biographies reflect this variety.
BUT ....... Yes, But!
But, I like to know who has written these articless that they are sharing at me, so I am a believer in reading the persons profile, always, either before reading the article or after.
You see, I often want more perspective on the article, and I get that from knowing more about the Hub writer and I get this from his/her Profile.
From my perspective, when I read a profile, I often make the following assumptions, based on what they say about themselves;
If you have no profile, then, to me, you either have no personality or you have something that you don't want me to know about you and I am immediately suspicious of writers with no profile available.
Short Cryptic Profile?
If you feel that 1-2 sentences written in some cute or sassy collection of phrases, that say nothing, and just waste my time, then again, I see someone without much to say, and who's work is probably, boringly the same as the silly Profile that I have just read.
Space Cadet Profile?
These are those people that feel that they must provide a profile that is so packed with implied intelligence and self importance that reading it brings on feelings of nausea. I run from these people because often their writings include the same stilted opinions.
Link filled Profile?
Sad to say, we all need to provide an adequate number of links to our other works and Blogs, while at the same time avoiding have our profile become a billboard.
Where the appropriate limit is for adequate links without a profile being packed with such and no longer saying anything coherent about the writer, is for each writer themselves to decide.
You can only injure your projected persona with excessive Links. But, at the same time? You need to strategically place them in your profile.
Rambling BS Profile?
Sure I, as a writer myself, and as an avid reader, will just love your profile if you fill it with random crap! Especially if it's rambling crap filled with spelling and grammatical errors.
Yep, I just love to spend my time trying to figure out just "what the hell" you are trying to say! Come on, people! Really!
Short to Medium sized Biography?
Usually it is true for me as well as my fellow writers; that if you give me, a short honest and well written biography that says something that is important to you, about you, then I feel more comfortable scanning through your collection of writings.
Why? Because, after reading such a profile, I will now know something about where your perspective may be coming from on your subjects. And, if you write a Profile that is interesting and even intriguing? Even Better!
Using Capsules to focus your information
Capsules! You really need to structure your article properly by using the Capsule function that your writer' site provides. The most important reason for using capsules is to help you organize your work so that you can keep the readers interest as well as force those important advertisements into the positions you want them in your article.
For instance, even if you just want to share a simple story about a subject such as your first Football game, you might want to use several capsules such as described below;
Capsule-1 should be a photo capsule and could include a good and yet realistic picture that relates to the game of Football or even a childhood picture of yourself.
I often prefer a realistic amateur picture because even though it is not a "perfect" picture, it will provide a feeling of personalization to the reader.
Capsule-2 should be a Text capsule and could perhaps include some background on what your story is going to be about. This text should be written to capture the reader's attention and make him/her want to read the whole hub.
Use this capsule to write a short but very interesting opening paragraph or two that really hook the reader. You already have them reading your article, now you need to tell them enough to want to finish the whole thing.
Capsule-3, and maybe Capsule-4,5,6, etc, should be text capsules and would include a clear and focused sections of text that tell your actual story.
Do no try to write your story in one capsule,even if it is a very short story.
Why use multiple Capsules? Well, you are writing on a writer's site, and they as well as Google need breaks in your article for their ads to be placed. One thing that goes into your article's actual writer's site and Google Search ranking is how easily they can place their ads to make money.
Your Ad Capsules? You really do need to include at least one advertisement capsule of your own, if you want to make a little something extra with your new article. Writers sites allow you to use three different types of capsules for additional Ads that you might want to feature.
If your story has a very short word count, then just place one or two ads in each of these capsules, but when your word count is relatively large then you can get away with placing more ads in these capsules. Control yourself!
AMAZON Capsule- Using an Amazon capsule provides you the opportunity place Amazon product ads that the reader might be interested in just enough to click on them.
LINK Capsule- Using this capsule you are allowed to place additional links to other sites on the web, but take care that you aren't using your own sites because this can be considered being "self-promotional" and can cause your article and maybe all of your works to be blocked.
A Poor Man's Guide to Publishing Your Book
Those ADs in your article
By organizing your article in such a manner, with pertinent capsules, you provide your reader with a nice recipe or story or even poem that is segmented, giving a good flow of information or story for the reader.
Think about it!
Even if you are writing a Poem or a Short Story or a technical document, if you look closely, you will often find that there are natural breaks in your writing that allow for the use of capsules.
Of course, a Haiku poem or a very short story may not have enough content for making logical breaks into capsules without damaging the flow, but you should at least try to find such and use them when possible.
Provide Breaks for ADs with Capsules:
As I mentioned above, another necessary reason for using capsules in your writings is to provide breaks in your article for the placement of Ads.
First of all, Google needs a few break areas in your Hub to place their Google ADs.
Secondly, you also need breaks for your own personal Ads, as well as Pictures, Videos, Data Tables, Surveys, Quizzes and such, that you also might want to include on your article to help capture the reader's interest, and raise the overall ranking of your article.
What are you going to tell me? and Why should I read it?
I am a firm believer in the old idiom that is quoted by many Speakers, Preachers and other people that have to say something important to a group of people. To paraphrase their speaking philosophy;
First- Tell them what You are going to tell them!.
Second- Tell them what you want them to Know! and,
Finally- Tell them what you have just Told them!
Because of this, I am a firm believer in opening my stories with a good, clear description of what you are going to read about in the following article.
If I can capture your attention and interest in this first few sentences, then I have a chance to hold your attention through to the end of my story.
And, in many of my articles, where applicable, you will see that I will often attempt to wrap up my story with a short summary for you to take with you, mentally.
Good Grammer! Don't make me stop reading!
Please use Good Grammar!
I bore aasily, and Bad Grammer bores me to the extreme!
OK, there are a wide variety of opinions of whether to use US English or British English, or Slang, or whatever, when you are writing.
My opinion is simple.
If I can read your story, and not trip over (very many) grammatical errors, then I will probably finish your article.
Will I like it?
That, my friend, is another question, but if you want me to like it, then you have to get me to finish it!
If I have to constantly stop, backup, and reread your article's content, then I am not happy, and as a result, i will probably not like your story!
I really don't care if you tell me that you have written a story in a cockney accent and that it is a good and interesting story that is true to form.
I really don't care if you write a story in American Redneck slang; again, if you tell me that is what you are doing, and that it is true to form.
I really do not want to read a story, or travelogue, or a recipe, or whatever, if it is written in Indian, or Pakistani, or Chinese, or whatever slang version of the English language you might use there, that I cannot follow and understand without a lot of effort.
You see, I am your reader, and as I have said, my patience threshold is very low, especially if you are wasting my time with an unintelligible Hub that you are just putting out there to make a Buck
These Hubs that are essentially unreadable, take the chance of being negatively Flagged by the reader, and that's not a good thing, if you are a writer who is serious about your work.
A book on the Essentials of English Grammar
Shorten your Paragraphs!
I was often called on to write technical documents over my career as an Engineer.
And, one of the things that I became aware of very early was that people really don't like to have to plow through long unbroken paragraphs of information.
When you break a paragraph down into short ones or even individual sentences, the reader often finds it easier to read and thus understand what you are saying.
There is just something about having a areas in a document where the writer provides a break for the eyes that makes it more understandable and entertaining.
If you give the eyes a break, you also give the brain a break.
Give the brain a break and it can chew over what you have just told them in bites rather than large chunks. Think about it!
So, in my opinion, give your readers a break and feed their brains in bites, or shorter paragraphs.
Provide Links for more Detailed Information.
Google likes to see Links!
But remember, they should be good and informative links that are relative to the overall subject of your article.
For instance, Goggle just will not think much of a link to your personal Cookbook in an article about Automobile Tires, or Knitting a sweater.
And, they will punish you and your ranking, eventually, when they catch up with the reference that you slipped in.
No, you should provide good informative Links to sites that allow the reader to expand his knowledge of what you have written, with a click.
Also, if you use links, make sure that you set up your HTML code so that the link is opened in another page, and they can get back to your article.
It's a bad thing that you are doing to yourself, if you provide a link for your reader and they cannot get back to your Hub easily.
You want to use self-promotional links sparingly in your articles.
If the Google search engine or even your writer's site finds that you have too many of these links in your artivle, then you will, again, be punished with a lower ranking.
One rule-of-thumb is to use only one or two self-promotional links in each of your articles to avoid being tagged as being too self-promotional.
Google likes for people to search for stuff and they like for people to read Ads and even purchase from the people that pay for the Ads, occasionally.
Once you accept this little piece of reality, then you will find that there are Useless Links and Useful links out there for you to use.
What is a Useless Link? Well, when you go over and search for some further information on your artivles subject, and you find a link to a site such as Wikipedia, for instance.
It might have some very good data available. But, it has no Ads or links.
Well, this is not a favored link to use from Google's perspective. If there are no ADs then they don't have any opportunities to make more money from such a link.
On the other hand, if you find a link where the site has, in addition to good data, numerous Ads, and even links to other sites with even more ADs, then you have hit the Google Link jackpot.
With such links, they get more opportunities for making even more money if the reader keeps clicking on these. And your ranking goes up.
Use Photos and Videos to accentuate your subject visually.
I am a frustrated Amateur Photographer at Heart.
And I have been such for years. Ever since the world of cameras went to digital, I have kept my photography cataloged and stored on hard drives.
And, often i will use my own photography to "beautify" my articles.
But, there is one lesson that I learned very early with my pictures. When you place a photograph of yours on the web, it is out there for the world to see. And that is a good thing!
But, sad to say, just like what happens so often with our articles, your photography is also out there for the world to steal.
I have really found only one surefire thing that I can do to control this unapproved use of my photography, short of including distracting text across my picture.
And my solution is to use only medium-resolution Thumbnails of my photography. This way, if someone want to steal it, they will get a smaller and sadly reduced-quality copy of my work.
Because of this loss of control of my property, I have even started using free picture sources such as Flickr for the occasional added picture, on my articles.
Videos: Videos can be a really great addition to an article.
Some of the more popular Recipe articles that I have seen recently, are the ones where the Cook/Chef took the time to record portions of the food preparation process and added these videos to their article.
And,the occasional; music video, political video or even social video can add yet another perspective to what you have written in your article.
I will occasionally even use videos from YouTube when I find a good fit to my subject.
Use money making Ads Frugally!
Hub writers, almost all of us, want to get paid for our writing.
And, to that end, we are putting ADs into our articles, with the hopes that our readers will click on the ADs and we can make a few pennies from the advertisers via Google Adsense and other such tools.
Which Ads will you see in your articles?
With Google, they will place ads into your Hubs, strategically, that they feel match what your Hub is all about.
And, Google uses such things as Keywords, Headings, Links and such inside your Hubs themselves, to determine the best ADs to place in your article.
I mean, really, if you write an article on Cats for instance, and you see Life Insurance ads on your article, after waiting about a week for the Google Spiders to settle down, then you need to get into SEO techniques and Tags and Keywords in your article.
Because, you have really confused Google and you need to work the Keywords they are assuming for your Hub.
There are so many good articles available for you, on making money with your writing such as using SEO management techniques to improve your article's rankings within search engines. You just need to take this subject on as a sub-task to your writings, and learn as you go along.
Then, there is the AMAZON capsule. It is available to provide ADs on your Hub and with Amazon Ads, there two important things for you to define when you use them.
1- Do you want to go onto Amazon and select specific products, that will be listed on your Hub to enhance your opportunity for sales, or
2- will you allow Amazon to place ADs, at their discretion, relative to your predefined keywords
And, of course, you have to have an Amazon account, for payment.
You can use the Links capsule to place links, along with a picture and descriptive text to your other sites (web pages, web stores, Blogs, etc.) where you have products that you wish to sell.
There are limitations on an article as to the number of ADs you can use.
The problem for most of us is that neither Google or anyone else will document these limits.
In the world of web writing, you really need to have a word count in your article that is large enough to support the number of ADs that you want to use.
For instance, with a short, 300-400 word article, you had best not use more than say, 1-2 Amazon and/or eBay ADs and only one or maybe two of your own.
Even this could push the envelope, so to speak.
On the other hand, a Hub of, say, 2000-5000 words could easily have 4-5 Amazon and eBay ADs and 2-3 of your own Links without getting you into trouble.
It is a very fluid thing that the world of Google seem to adjust to their own standards over time.
So, caution and frugality with ADs is recommended. At least until you have established yourself as a relatively prolific and quality writer.
Make your artcle interesting from Beginning to the End!
Whatever you write, whether Poetry, Short Stories, Recipes, or technical documents, make them interesting and make them flow well.
All of us have read a book, at one time or another, where, when asked; How did you like the Book?, you think for a minute and say;
Well, It took a while to get into it!
or, It was really Dry at first, but it got better at the end!
These are not words of praise, and ...... they are a Kiss of Death for good writers as well.
Make your article not only interesting, but readable, and make the words flow from sentence to sentence, right up until the reader is actually surprised, and a little disappointed that he has reached the end.
Do this and you will keep your followers.
Wrap Your Article up with a Great Ending!
A writer should never Just Run out of Story.
A story, not only has a beginning, it must have a great Ending. An Ending that says;
And That's What I'm Talking About! ...... with the exclamation mark!
Even something as mundane as a recipe for white bread can have an ending that reinforces, in the reader's mind, the fact that this is a great recipe for white bread!
So, in words or pictures, give your article a great Ending!
Before you Publish your Article, EDIT it well!
One of your biggest enemies, as a writer, when you finish an article, will be your desire to release it to the world to read.
It is one of my major weakness' that I too must deal with, all of the time.
When you finish a Hub, save it and walk away from it, for a while.
Go drink a glass of Tea, or turn on the news, or whatever you might need to do.
Just take your mind off of the Hub and what you were trying to say, and just get into something else for a short while. Clear your Head!
Let it get Cold!
Then, an hour, or a day, or a week later, go back and read it, from a fresh perspective.
It will be amazing what you will catch that may have embarrassed you, had you not allowed it to sit and then reread it.
Respond to Comments, they are your Followers
In the world of Writing on the web, we are all writers and readers.
Your readers will leave comments on your articles.
You will never see negative or hurtful comments, but you want comments.
Receiving a comment is an indicator that you have piqued someone's interest with your writing and that they have opinions to state, themselves, on the same subject.
And, to me, a good readers comment making a good point on my article, deserves my studied response to the reader.
And, often, to me at least, a good comment drives me back to the readers own articles often just to see what they have released recently that I may have missed.
Writing is still a GOOD Thing!
Looking back at this Hub, I see that I have gone off onto a rather long path full of suggestions, ideas, and ways to write a good article.
Well, please, as a Newbie article writer, don't allow this to intimidate you.
You are here because you are a writer, and you want to be a better one.
Since I started writing on the web, these are some of the things that I have learned over the past couple of years.
Use them as you will!
Writing is still a Good Thing regardless of how much work is involved!
How to Create a Hub Page
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.