Beta - Starpulse Writers Guidelines

Please read me Please make sure you read and understand these important guidelines

Starpulse Writers Guidelines

Whether you are starting a blog on Starpulse for the first time, or writing your 100th assignment from the Editorial Team.  These rules below still apply.

Let's get this out of the way.

1) Plagiarism won't be tolerated.  By definition plagiarism is the use of another's original words or ideas as though they were your own.  Anyone who borrows from published material will have blogging permissions removed immediately.  

If you do reference a source, make sure to credit it in the article.  For example, if you're doing a background check on Tom Cruise and learn from IMDb.com that he has dyslexia, make sure to credit IMDb.  Unless Tommy calls you up himself to confirm it, the information has to be properly attributed.  

2) Don't blindly trust the internet.  There is a lot of misinformation out there, so make sure your research is accurate.  If something doesn't sound right, it probably isn't.   Let's say one or two articles mention that Renee Zellweger had a lesbian tryst.  Think twice before repeating gossip as gospel.  Instead, you may write, "There have been rumors about Renee Zellweger batting for the other team." You would not write, "Renee Zellweger has unequivocally had a relationship with a woman." You get the point.

3) There are some things that don't need to be credited, such as general knowledge.  We know Nicole Kidman has two adopted children and is married to Keith Urban.  We know Gwyneth Paltrow & Brad Pitt dated several years ago.  This type of information is widely known by the general public.  If you're not sure what to credit, just ask.

4) Some obvious points: Check your spelling. Some names in particular (McConaughey, Zellweger, Schwarzenegger, etc.) are difficult to spell.

5) Punctuation such as periods and commas should be inserted "inside quotes."

6) Try to avoid clichés.  Good writers are able to express themselves without falling into this trap. Top on this rule.... never, ever use "without further ado."

7) Mix it up.  Try to not to use the same words or phrases too often within a paragraph. Vary your sentence length.  Sometimes very long sentences are difficult to read and make the reader sigh in relief when he finally comes to the end of the wordy sentence, which could have been split into two (and maybe even three!) separate sentences.


8) Try to keep articles to two pages on Word or less.
 
Feature stories (approximately 700-1,000 words) shorter features (400-700 words). When it comes to interviews, keep only the interesting points and/or split it into two parts.  We don't want to overwhelm readers with enormous copy.

9) Avoid the use of the first person if you can.  (There are exceptions to this rule, particularly when it comes to episode recaps.) In the future we may turn some writers into columnists who will be more flexible with their writing styles. But for now, use the third person when cranking out your masterpieces.

10) Be as vigilant as possible with deadlines.  At the very least, let us know if a story is going to be late.  We're very flexible, but we expect each writer to keep track of his or her own timetable. We have a growing group of writers, and it's becoming increasingly difficult for us to keep tabs on everyone's schedule.  

11) Don't be shy about submitting your own ideas for articles and interviews.  Some of you have suggested some very interesting topics, and we count on you to make our readers come back for more.  Also, we would really like to have writers commit to particular features.  For example, we have a "Celebrity Spotlight" feature, which could be a weekly or biweekly item.  We also have fashion editor.

12) Copyright.
When you write and submit an article to the Starpulse.com website, you are consenting to have it published on Starpulse.com, and transferring your copyrights to Starpuls.com. The content becomes Starpulse.com content; and standard Starpulse.com copyrights apply to that content moving forward. In other words, it should not be published by another outlet (except on your personal websites) because it is the property of Starpulse.com.

Any questions?  Let us know!