You've Got Tools, Use Them. Here's How.

by FlyingMonkey | July 26, 2015 | (9) Posted in Tips

Hi guys, it's me again.

I know it's been a while since I've posted on here, but I've been noticing a trend in recently submitted articles.  There's been good articles coming through, but they've been plain.  They lack a certain something.  The unfortunate thing is that the writers have what they need to round out their articles right at their fingertips, but it seems they don't know that it's available for them to use.  I intend to try to change that with this article.  Below you will find an assortment of built in tools, and possibly one or two that can be found on the internet.



What is he talking about?

What am I talking about?  I'm glad you asked.  There is a toolbar at the top of the editing box that will allow you to dress up your article.  Make it more digestible.  Easier for the reader to break up into bits of information that they can come back to, and reread if they want.  



Breaking up your article.

As I mentioned above, it can help the reader for you to break your article into smaller sections.  Something else that will help that is letting the reader know you meant to break it up, by giving each section a title.  Titles are important, so you can illustrate that by changing the font, the thickness, or the size of the words.  The tools that can help with that are here...


Changing sides!

Something else you might find useful,

is the ability to change which side

of the page your writing starts from.

Why would that be useful?

I'm not quite sure.

But someone might find it as such,

so I'm sharing it here.



Needing space.

Another feature an author might find handy is the ability to change the size of the work space.  This can be done by clicking on the lower right corner of the editing panel, and dragging it to make the pane the size you want it to be.



Making points, by the numbers.

Maybe you want to use bullet points, or count out a series of informational tidbits.  These are the buttons for you.

  • Bullet points
  • Are good for lists.
  1. Numbers can be useful,
  2. Too.



You can quote me on that.

I'll be perfectly honest... I haven't figured out the "blockquote" feature yet.  But since I didn't want to skip two items without commenting on them...



Speaking of Abe LINKoln...

Then there's the hyperlink tool.

This allows you to link to a website, by hiding it into words.  It will alter the color of the text you've applied it to, and when the reader clicks on the words, it will take them to the website you attached to them.



Was it spelt rite?

Honesty time again.  I've found this included tool to be pretty useless.  Sometimes it works, other times it doesn't. I personally use my wife to spellcheck my articles.  Not always.  You can tell because the articles I post without her checking, have lots of gramatical, and spelling mistakes.



Window Pain

The last tool on the bar for me to share with you opens your editing plane to a full screen page.  If you're used to working in a word editing program, this might feel more comfortable for you.




Images, and Movies, Oh MY.

Maybe you'd like to add images into your article, or even a video.  This process can be a ittle confusing.  You click on the related icon.  Then a window will pop up, click the "select files" option, and then go through the list of image files on your computer, pick one, and select it. Here's where the tools for that can be found.


This seems a little SKITCHy.

Skitch is a free program that Chad Kapper (Here's $5.00) shared with me years ago.  It has lots of great features, perfect for quick edits to images.  



Finishing up.

I hope this will help you when writing articles.  I know it's a bit on the long side, but I hope it wasn't too boring.  I would understand.  While writing this I fell asleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee   opps, I dozed off.  Anyhow, I went through the avaiable tool items in the bars above the writing plane.  I even showed off one of my secret ones, Skitch.  So, on your next article, try out some new things.  You might just be surprised how much it can change the overall feel of your article.




HilldaFlyer on August 15, 2015
Thanks for the tips. I've noticed an upward trend in quality. Thanks!
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FlyingMonkey on August 15, 2015
Thank you!
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Scarcasm on July 27, 2015
HA! Next year I need my own team. That on-call stuff is for the birds.
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FlyingMonkey on August 3, 2015
You need your own team, period!
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NoUsername on July 27, 2015
Hey Fred are you an English teacher?
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FlyingMonkey on August 3, 2015
No, I am not. In fact, if I don't have my wife proofread my articles, you'll sometimes wonder how I ended up with this job. :D
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thenated0g on July 28, 2015
Thanks for keeping the standards up. A lot of times you don't really notice, but than every once in a while you do a search and find something from the beginning and it really stands out how much they have improved.
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FlyingMonkey on August 3, 2015
Thanks! Everything with Flite Test has been so community based, that I am excited to see this section thriving with member generated articles. I have been increasingly stricter with what I will publish. I was worried that the writers would be upset that I was being so critical of their work. That hasn't been the case, for the most part they realize that I'm just trying to make sure that what information they're trying to share is both a representation of their best work, and something that the readers will enjoy.
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Scarcasm on July 27, 2015
Thanks Fred,
Very useful info.

Patrick (aka Kevin)
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FlyingMonkey on July 27, 2015
AKA... Hey, we're having electric problems. Call that generator guy!

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You've Got Tools, Use Them. Here's How.