www.whyville.net Jun 14, 2009 Weekly Issue

Guest Writer

Want to Write for the Times?

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"how do i write 4 da whyvil timez" many newbies ask. It's pretty simple and easy, it seems to be at first, but truthfully, it's not at all! Sure, it's pretty decently simple, but it takes a lot to have most of the citizens applaud for what you write. Often times, the beginning writers receive a lot of criticism, making them not want to write anymore. The criticism, however, is constructive and you need to listen to it; it'll make you improve! Today, I'm going to give everyone guidelines; even experienced writers should read this every once in a while!

The E-mail Address and Subject Line

First of all, you need to know the e-mail you're going to send it to! The e-mail that you will need to send the article to is: times@whyville.net

Once you've typed in the address, you need to know how to bring up your subject line. There is a lot of spam these days, and the Times Editor only receives and reads the articles if the subject line looks like this: (title of the article), (your username), (Type of article (Help, PEople,, Creative Writing, Poem, Interview, etc.).

Example: Want to Write for the Times?, Mylo9810, Help

The Topic of Your Article

After all of that, you need to think of the subject your article is going to be! Is it going to be an interview or a poem? Is it going to be about insects or people? This is probably one of the most difficult parts of creating your article. You need to make something catchy and interesting, but make sure that it's not someone else's idea! Be creative. It could be a story, or maybe even a series if you're willing to put a lot of time into it. A good thing to do is write a little bit of each subject, and see which one you enjoy writing, and the one that seems to be your talent in writing. If it's none of them, don't worry! Just keep practicing and you're likely to become great at it!

Here are some different subjects that you can try, and see what they should look like:


Poems should be very rhythmic, and in each part of the poem, keep it flowing. It should have about five parts or maybe a little more or less. This is how it should look like:

The voice of nature
it is very precious
It makes you sure,
from the noises it makes

After that, create more lines and parts to it, perhaps the voice of nature in the stream gurgling its song, then the voice of nature in the wind, and then in the croaks of frogs!


For interviews, you need to come up with a topic to interview about. After that, you need to format it in the correct way to ensure that it will be more likely to be accepted, and to relieve the Times Editor of a bit of stress and loss of time. Here is an example of the format:

Mylo9810: Hello, Randomperson! How are you?
Randomperson: I am doing great, Mylo. How about you?

After that, you're pretty much all set! But at the first paragraph of your interview, explain as to what you're going to interview about, and maybe who you're going to interview.

Creative Writing (Stories)

Now, for stories. For them, you need to come up with a fascinating story that will bring the readers into your story. Make sure you include lots of detail, though not too much! Just enough to have your readers feel like they're in the story. And with the characters, don't make them like robots! They need to feel things. If they get hurt, they need to feel pain and wince or grunt or screech or cry. With emotions, don't be afraid to bring them out! Feel them as you write, and pass it on to the readers.

Also, don't have it all as quotes. It should have paragraphs on detail, but don't make them too long, either. It causes confusion if it's too long, and it makes it feel broken if they're too short. So, basically, it has to be perfect, or around those parts :P.


Since you've gotten your topic down, it's time to begin writing! This is probably the most fun part, and most exhilarating if you're writing a fiction story. Don't worry about the spelling and proofreading at this part, but it's helpful if you still think about it as you're writing to prevent total frustration during the proofreading. Remember, this is just your rough draft! If you read it the first time and get discouraged, that's not good! This is just your rough draft, so that means that you still have the proofreading to do.


Once you're done with your rough draft, begin going through the article and fixing spelling mistakes. Here are some questions you should ask yourself:

Is this spelled correctly?
Is this sentence too long?
Is the wording correct? (Example: there is to many colors (wrong). There are too many colors.(correct).)
Does this draw the readers in?
Is this paragraph too long or too short?
How can I improve this article?

After you've finished with your own proofreading, if you want to be extra cautious, send it to an experienced writer to proofread it, also. Once you're completely sure that you're ready to send it in, send it in. If you were just writing it and you hardly got a chance to proofread it because you had to get off, don't send it! Save it in a WordPerfect or Microsoft Word; it'll save you some embarrassment. Then save it, and you can proofread it later.

Sending Your Article

This is the last part. You can easily get nervous, especially if it's your first article. If it doesn't get accepted, that's okay. You can just write another one; don't give up! And if it's accepted, then congratulations! Keep writing, and listen to the constructive criticism if there's any. It'll help a lot!

I hope I've helped everyone who's been needing help; I enjoy helping! And to the more experienced writers, I hope that I've refreshed your memory a bit and has helped you with your next article.

Ta ta for now!


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