I was going to treat a hub like a blog on a topic, but I seem to see that hubs are just individual articles or am I totally missing the idea?
Hubs are supposed to be long form articles. An expanded answer to a question in a magazine format - with text, pictures, quizzes, maps and polls.
Quite what sort of magazine that is I have no idea.
But no - they're not blogs. Blogs is blogs. HubPages is articles.
That's the general idea.
Hubs are meant to be like articles, self-contained and not overly-personal.
I'll take exception with hubs not being overly-personal. This is the new HP mantra, but not that long ago hubs were whatever you wanted them to be. Some of us still write that way and it's not a question of being professional or not. It's a matter of what kind of professional you choose to be. Welcome all - I say!
Hubs are still whatever you want them to be.
That doesn't mean that that is what HubPages had in mind when creating the site. Overly personal hubs in general don't get search engine hits, and drag down the overall search engine power of the site - affecting everybody.
Livejournal exists, there is no reason for that stuff to be here. But, nobody is stopping you.
Never heard of Livejournal so I took a look. Now I know why I never heard of it. HubPages is big enough for every writing style and from the figures I've seen, only the owners must be making any serious money. Looked at your list of hubs too and they are quite a variety of topics. I'll have to find some time to do some reading..
Livejournal was the very first major "Web 2.0" platform of its kind...making HubPages a direct descendant.
HubPages is big - that doesn't mean every writing style belongs here. It isn't about size, it is about setup. HubPages isn't set up to make money from Poetry.
And the owners of anything are the ones that make serious money, every cashier in America will agree with that I'm sure. They make a percentage of what all of us combined make. That's *why* they designed the website. However, most of the people on HubPages would probably not make a dime without them...and there aren't many websites that offer the mentoring that HubPages offers.
That's why I'm especially glad I found HubPages -- the mentoring aspect. I like the idea that helping others helps everyone. Whatever a Hub might be for an author, it's an easygoing place with a sense of community that I like very much. I can't think of a better place for me to get some idea of what I'm doing with writing online. LiveJournal doesn't have that sense of solidarity and support -- I've been on LJ since 1999.
As for style -- I've already mentioned that I like to suit my style to my prospective audience and make it informative. I probably should have said "tone". If a renegade "I" slips in I don't worry too much, but I try for an engaging tone as opposed to relating information in the first person. regardless of the audience. I'm learning the design elements as I go along.
I think you're misunderstanding what Psycheskinner (and HubPages) means by overly personal.
Overly personal means a Hub that offers nothing of value to anyone except the writer and his/her immediate family.
So for instance, if you write about some annoying guy who gave you a hard time at the markets this morning, or how sweet your new grandchild is, that's overly personal. If you write your life story and you've never done anything more interesting than go to the movies, that's overly personal.
However if you're writing about an illness you're suffering (which other people also suffer from), or the trials and tribulations of bringing up baby (which other people can learn from), or you've had a fascinating life - all those things aren't overly personal.
Sorry, but I have to disagree. They aren't overly personal for the internet - but they are overly personal to monetize via HubPages...(I can't believe I have to say this, but "with exceptions" of course). Try writing a hub about those types of things while in the Apprenticeship program - they will shoot it down as being "overly personal". The phrase itself is subjective - and when I'm saying it, I'm pretty much regurgitating what HP means when they say it...because I wholly agree with them.
I haven't done the apprenticeship program, so I was talking about "overly personal" in the sense of what would get a Hub unpublished.
I can see why the Apprenticeship program is more strict - it's because it's focussed on teaching you what to write to get traffic and make money. Of course "how to" and sales-oriented Hubs are going to be more commercial, so the mentors are going to advise against writing personal experience stuff. But it doesn't mean it's prohibited here.
mattforte, I'm not sure where you got the impression personal hubs are not allowed in the Apprentice program. It is encouraged to write what you are passionate about and what you know about. The topic's are then usually personal in nature. Personal hubs filled with information that is useful to other readers is a great way to start here on HP. Here is a hub written by Robin weaving her personal experience with relevant information. http://robin.hubpages.com/hub/Bee-Stings-on-the-Eye
So I have to agree with Marisa Wright's analysis of what overly personal means on HP. From an APs perspective.
I got the impression because I was in the very first group.
Bee stings in the eye is not a personal hub - weaving personal information into the hub is very different than a hub being personal.
Which is the exact point Marissa was making. Now we all seem to agree.
A personal story about your battle with an illness is different than an informative article about what to do when a bee decides to stab you in the eye, with personal touches included. That is the point I was making...and I thought I spelled that out pretty clearly.
You seem to only understand your own thoughts clearly. Marissa has been a part of these forums for years and her experience I'm sure has taught her hubbers can use a word that changes the intent of what they were trying to say. If you reread the initial post of Marissa that you respond in disagreement to you will see hubbers are using the word personal hub when they mean overly personal hub. So if you.d used the word overly personal you would have made yourself more clear.
Personal hub=robins hub=personal but with useful info=good for hubpages
Overly personal=like robins but only talking about her bee sting(only people interested would be friend/family)no useful info included = good for a blog but not hp.
This is how these terms are used here. At least I think .
Might be wrong.
As you clarified in your reply, we were talking about two different things. I thought you were talking about the rule - i.e. what's prohibited. You were talking about what's going to do well commercially.
If something isn't prohibited, then HubPages has made it clear that all types of writing are welcome, even the non-commercial stuff. There is a thread somewhere where I expressed concern that many Hubbers won't realise the implication of the "idling" process. Derek replied that a large proportion of Hubbers aren't writing for a larger audience anyway, so it doesn't matter to them - and HubPages is happy with that. Which surprised me, I must say, because surely HubPages wants writing they can make money from.
You also need to get a tweed jacket and do some serious posing.
Im not good at writing impersonal, although I do like biographies, so I spose I could write other ppls stories. Things that lack going deeper into the human condition just isn't as interesting to me. I guess I will just write for me, Im sure that's good on some level.
I'm on your boat here. I'd rather write about my deep personal feelings and experiences than about how to train a three-legged dog. I mean, If I had a three-legged dog I'd definitely do a piece on that. I am obviously much better versed on my own experiences than conglomerating a bunch of other people's expriences.
My life experiences have made who I am today and if that means i'm an unintelligent, bore to some people, so be it. I'm not here for them, I'm here for me. And to meet others who are here on HP for "me" as well. I suppose we all fit into some kind of clique or group of people based on our experiences, otherwise judgement ensues and to me that is nonsense. For instance, the people that come to the forums just to pick a fight about something they don't believe in. I understand that a clean debate is necessary and entertaining for most, but the outright rudeness and judgemental attitude of others is a waste of my time.
It's still possible to write about deeply personal things and write an article. I'm sure you've read many articles like that in high street magazines, about how people have risen above adversity or survived adventures etc.
The difference between an article and a blog post is that a blog post is typically shorter and doesn't have to have any purpose or direction. It can be a rant, a musing, and it may not have much to say on its own - it has meaning because it's part of a bigger blog about the same person or on the same subject. Whereas an article is longer and more polished, and can be read as a self-contained unit (even if you've written other articles on the same topic).
I know a few people who are successful at blogging - or writing articles - because they're sharing how they overcame (or are striving to overcome) a particular challenge - an illness, a sick child, abuse etc - and that drew an audience of people who are in the same situation. They're not writing about how to train dogs, they're writing about something far more emotional and personal - but it still works. And they're even able to make money at it, because they can do things like advertising books or equipment they've found to be helpful, or sell ebooks on the subject.
Well hopefully that's what I'm doing.
I haven't seen those articles that you mentioned though, I seldom ever look at magazines.
I'm going to try blogging, thank you;) But I'm sticking with hub pages whether anyone reads my hubs or not. I'll be back to share my blogging adventures soon.
Have you listened to the "Bluegrass Preservation Society Podcast?"
It's this old guy who introduces bluegrass music every week in a podcast, and he has two fictional cats, he details what they are doing with the usual style of bob-newart comedy of carrying on one end of a fictional interaction.
It's funny as heck.. So maybe you can talk about a fictional three-legged dog?
I'll go ahead and agree with the above comments which define Hubs as articles -- my goal in writing a Hub is to provide an informative and well-written piece which is neither formal essay nor blog. I strive for something in between -- I'll see if I can put it into words that make more than abstract sense, which is kind of difficult for me as I'm sort of new to this kind of thing.
A formal essay is an academic piece designed purely to convey information. It is completely impersonal -- thou shalt not use the dreaded "I" (so to speak). It is designed with the following in mind: Tell the reader what the essay will contain, write the content, summarize with a re-phrasing of the content, and ensure that all paragraph transitions feel smooth and natural. If there must be a "break" in subject, ensure that it does not interrupt the flow of the work. This type of composition is a "full-circle", impersonally written source of information.
A blog, or "weblog", is a personal site on which one is free to post rantings, ravings, poetry, essays, &c. There is no restriction on a blog entry in terms of format or structure. You can write whatever you like -- personal or impersonal -- and it is your "blog". You create it, you write it, you display it in whichever fashion you like.
As I see things, when you're writing for an online audience, you have a triple challenge: 1) providing immediate information to the reader 2) in an accessible composition 3) that is also visually appealing. This means using keywords to get the reader there in the first place, but once they ARE there, it also means giving them a concisely detailed (potential paradox there?) resource that contains relevant *and* enjoyable content. You want them to stick around -- you want them to read your work! People searching online want to interact with the information they find -- they want pictures, links, videos, items of interest, &c.
This is where Hubs come in, and that's why I came here -- to learn how to write for people who demand immediately relevant and enjoyable content. Content, style, tone, and design all come into the picture. I aim for a tone that is complementary to my content: if I'm writing about a writing exercise, it may well end up a bit more "textbook" in tone. Why? -- because that's what appeals to people who are looking up writing exercises in the first place!
I'd say suit your style to your intended audience -- but be sure to make it interactive and just a little bit fun, too! If your readers can get absorbed in your Hub because they're having a great time reading what you have to say, you'll gain a huge following for sure!
To answer question about whether "Hubs" are articles or logs, I would have to base my opinion on the fact the can be both depending on the writer. I've noticed that there are some hubbers, whom do it freely express themselves while others do it for a living. I've only been here for almost a week and in that short period that's what I base my opinion on through all the forums, hubs, questions and etc. Have a nice day!
Yeah, for awhile I treated them like blogs. But they are articles. As for me....I don't blog. My random thoughts w/o any personal critique have NO PLACE on line LOL!! Stuff on-line is FOREVER! I'd just as soon forget some of my darker nastier moods.
I like your comment, PV, and I think you are on the right track.
Thank you, Rochelle! I am still growing accustomed to the difficulty of "changing gears" to appeal to an online audience, but I quite believe that suiting your writing to your readership will draw a larger audience whether or not it is online. My main struggle of late has been the question of keywords, but as I learn I feel certain I will improve.
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