Help! I'm a newbie - and a novice (not necessarily the same...)

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  1. cherihut profile image76
    cherihutposted 5 years ago

    Hi, all. I’m a newbie here. Well, I’ve technically been a member for 18 months or so, but after I first joined I got caught up in the busyness of life and work and so on. But now I thought I’d try to start living my dream – to be a freelance writer (hoping that in the process I can maybe make a little money, too).

    Here’s the thing. I’ve looked on here, and on other writing sites as well, but either I’m really dumb (a distinct possibility) or everyone out there who writes articles meant for newbies doesn’t get that “newbie” might very well include people who have NO idea at all about how to get started. So many times I read an article that I think will be helpful (and it is – or would be if I actually knew something first), and I want to shout, “I don’t know what you’re talking about! Talk to me like I’m 5!”

    It isn’t the idea of writing that bothers me so much; it’s all the logistics of making it happen that I don’t get. And, though HubPages looks like it has a lot of potential for me, I’m kind of at a loss. Am I missing something, or is there really no actual home page? I would think there would be a page where one can go to that would include a search box, a basic intro to the site, a nice drop-down menu with clear, concise headings that would help you navigate the site. It’s kind of like an informational book with no cover and no table of contents. You’re on your own. You have to flounder around all over the place – I feel like I’m on a treasure hunt or in a maze or something.

    See,  I’ve never written online. OK, I’ve written on forums and commented on articles and posted stuff on Facebook, but I somehow don’t think those things really count. smile What I want to know is how to actually get started. Step-by-step instructions. I really am a very visual and also tactile kind of person. Maybe I’m a baby, but generally, I need someone to hold my hand and SHOW me how to do something. Or explain it in such a way that I can CLEARLY understand it. I love it when people use graphics and/or videos in their instructions. Anyway, can someone help me out, or direct me to an article (or more) that will really explain all the nuances of writing online to a newbie? (Again, talk to me like I’m 5).

    Some examples of things I don’t know how to deal with: copyrights… how and when do you do this? I hear of people stealing articles, so I guess I should protect myself... Earning money. Again, how and when? Do I need to set something up BEFORE I submit my article? Plus, I could use some help on some of these terms that people throw around – and I don’t know what they’re talking about. Is there a list somewhere of the industry terms, or terms specific to this site? I’d just like a simplified manual of the ins and outs of this business. As soon as I figure it all out – and if all goes well – I think I’ll write an article on here for Newbie Novices like I am right now… “HubPages Super-Simplified.” And if somebody beats me to it in a very timely fashion (like in the next couple of days), that’s OK by me. I could probably use it. And if it’s already out there, please direct me to it? It has to be something for a complete novice.

    - Cheri

    1. WryLilt profile image91
      WryLiltposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      Click on start a new hub on the top right.
      You don't have to sign up for earnings before you write. Newbies don't usually make a lot before they get the hang of it.
      Any hub you can edit every part of it except the URL anytime you want.
      To make money, you need search views from Google and social media. Write right they'll come on their own.
      Everything you write is copyright automatically, I wouldn't worry about thieves too much for now.

      I have a hub on top newbie mistakes (you can click on my name to see it on my profile.)

      1. cherihut profile image76
        cherihutposted 5 years agoin reply to this

        Thanks so much! I'll look up your hub and give it a read. smile

    2. profile image0
      Jennifer Sucheyposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      One of the things I found most confusing was the use of capsules in my writing. I wasn't sure of the purpose or how to use them. I discovered they're good of you want to interject photos, ads, or other things within your hub. Why was weird for me wash arming how to ad them and how too be them around, which is done in the right column. I'm guessing a tutorial you are reading addresses this. I figured out how to use them by reading a hub or two myself. And it still took some trial and error to get it.

  2. paradigmsearch profile image88
    paradigmsearchposted 5 years ago
    1. cherihut profile image76
      cherihutposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks. Now, see? These aren't mentioned on the toolbar at the top. Would be helpful if they were... But thanks, again. I've bookmarked them. smile

  3. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image94
    Marcy Goodfleischposted 5 years ago

    Cheri - I completely see what you're saying here!  I hope Paul, Robin and others read your post and make note of what you're saying.  You're right - it's very difficult for anyone just hitting the site to find their way around.  And if you are already a 'member' here, when you click on the HubPages logo at the upper left of each screen, you go to your own feed, rather than to a main page of some sort.  The main page could use more information to help readers as well as Hubbers find what they are looking for on the site.

    I'm glad WryLilt and Paradigmsearch pointed you toward some areas of the site that might help you get started. Please continue to post questions here if you run into other problems, or search the learning center and FAQs for possible answers.

    Best of luck!

    1. cherihut profile image76
      cherihutposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      Marcy, thanks for the input! I appreciate it. smile

  4. larakern profile image70
    larakernposted 5 years ago

    Cheri, I get what you're saying and have been feeling the same way for a few weeks now but I have finally experimenting with different elements and stuff. Feel free to ask me questions when you get stuck. Good luck!

  5. Jean Bakula profile image94
    Jean Bakulaposted 5 years ago

    I understand exactly how you feel, when I began on HP, my only experience was email and the occasional letter on Word. There is a huge section on all the rules, and many of your questions will be answered there.

    The first mistake most newbies make is to write their first hub in one text capsule. Don't do that. Pretend it's 1000 words. Split that into about 5 text capsules. Why? Because you will need the spaces in between the paragraphs to add pictures and graphs, or other stuff to make your hub more personally yours.

    The community is very nice and many people will help you. There are people online seemingly 24/7 if you have a problem, check out the forums, and you will see all the kinds there are to answer your questions. Give it time, read what others are writing and get some ideas from the way they layout their hubs.

    Welcome to Hubpages! Just like any site, it has a group of malcontents, but don't let them get you down. Because of Google changes, the rules change from time to time, but the staff gives ample warning about things like that. Write about what you know and love, and it will show through in your writing.

  6. profile image0
    Jennifer Sucheyposted 5 years ago

    You are in good company if you have a lot of questions because people around here like to answer questions. Everyone is very helpful and very friendly. After you read the info others suggested, feel free to fire away with more questions. Generally one question or so at a time is probably good even of you have to post several new topics one after the other.

  7. LongTimeMother profile image94
    LongTimeMotherposted 5 years ago

    Hi Cheri,

    I wrote a hub to try and help newbies after noticing a lot of writers seemed unaware of the basics. Don't know if it will help you or not, but here's a link ... … d-approval

    Good luck!

    1. cherihut profile image76
      cherihutposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks to all of you have responded! I'm sure I will find your suggestions very helpful. I appreciate the input!

      God bless +
      - Cheri


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