How To Write A Successful Article
What is an article? That might seem rather basic, but judging from the submissions we receive, the definition isn't clear to everyone. For our purposes, an article is a story or an essay based on truth and told in your own words (no plagiarism, please). It can be an account of an interesting person, a moving experience, an idea that might solve a problem, or something you learned and would like to share with others.
Want to write a memorable article for allnurses.com. Here are some suggestions.
We want at least 600 words. Many submissions fall short and can't be considered for that reason. (To determine word count, cut and paste your article into Word or another processing program and use their counting feature.)
Articles have beginnings, middles and ends. Start with a heartfelt memory, flesh it out with a few particulars, and finish by describing what this experience--positive or negative--meant to you. Paint the picture of an unusual patient, how you were--or weren't--able to care for him, and what you have carried forward from your contact with this person. Spell out a vexing need that you face as a caregiver or a patient or family member, brainstorm a solution, then tell us how your suggestion could implemented to benefit those involved.
Please, please, please, respect patient confidentiality. Don't use real names, no matter how generic they might seem to you. Change the medical details and the circumstances enough to guarantee anonymity for those you are discussing. You might even think about changing gender, age, geography or other identifying markers as long as you can stay true to the main experience. "Based on truth" means that the core values remain, even if you have to blur some of the demographics to protect privacy. Most of the time, an actual diagnosis is far less important than the effect it has on the patient. Softening the clinical information can keep the focus where it belongs--on the people or the thoughts you're trying to share. Acknowledge, if you wish, that you have altered some of the details.
Keep good taste in mind. The most gifted of writers tend to tread carefully when telling stories involving genitalia, sexual themes, and bathroom situations. That's not to say you can't ever venture into such territory, only that it's a challenging minefield to navigate successfully. Often, with risqué stories, "you had to be there" to appreciate the humor. Those who weren't directly involved either don't get it, or they do get it and wish they didn't. Try to avoid the ewww factor.
The Terms of Service that govern regular posts (available via link at the bottom of the page) apply to articles as well, so stereotypes, vulgar language, insults and other rude and crude forms of expression are generally not welcome. Exceptions may be made when this kind of behavior figures into the story or it demonstrates the abrasiveness of a character, but use it sparingly. Like pepper in a stew, a little goes a long way.
A word about mechanics. We appreciate articles that are easy on the eyes. Use paragraph breaks. Punctuate. . Choose a normal-size font. We're not looking for perfection, just an inviting format that doesn't distract from the content.
The best articles are the ones that invite us to step outside ourselves and connect--with the author, the characters, the ideas--even if only for a moment.Last edit by Joe V on Sep 3, '18
Jan 11, '14Occupation: RN Specialty: 25 year(s) of experience ; From: FL, US ; Joined: Jan '14; Posts: 20; Likes: 99How will I know if my article is posted?Jan 11, '14Occupation: Utilization Review, prior Intake Mgr Home Care Specialty: 40 year(s) of experience in Home Care, Vents, Telemetry, Home infusion ; From: PA, US ; Joined: Oct '00; Posts: 27,548; Likes: 13,755Articles are reviewed by Mod Team to meet above standards and once approved (usually within 24-48hrs after posting), will appear as link under BLOG section of your profile. We encourage all AN members to add their voice to our website.Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Jan 11, '14Jan 2, '15Occupation: Psychiatric Nurse/Student Advisor/Writer/Speaker Specialty: 2 year(s) of experience ; From: US ; Joined: Apr '12; Posts: 603; Likes: 927Is there a way that I can generate more traffic to the articles that I have written. I notice that most of my articles tend to fizzle out. Also, if I notice an error in my article after it is posted, how can I edit?Jan 2, '15Occupation: Information Technology Director Specialty: 20 year(s) of experience in Software Engineer, Programmer, Strategist ; From: NJ, US ; Joined: Feb '07; Posts: 8,025; Likes: 6,225Tips to Increase Traffic
Submit Evergreen Articles
Evergreen articles stay relevant regardless of age of content.
Articles with 600+ words have a higher Views count.
Articles with 1,000+ words have a higher sharing count.
Write about current hot topics.
If members are discussing the subject right now than it's safe to say that it's a good idea to write an article about it.
Title is Important
Be clear and concise with your title. The right title can help drive traffic.
Think of how people search on the Web. On search results pages, Google only displays the first 70 characters (sometimes as low as 54) of title. The page description is usually the first 150+ characters of the topic page.
This is an opportunity to grab the reader's attention.
Format your article
Format your article - include spaces, headings, bullets, etc
Include videos, images, links, and/or study guides or pdf whenever possible.
How many times have you opened an article and scanned it before reading? The easier it is to read the more likely you will grab the reader's attention.
Submit articles throughout allnurses.
Spread your articles around to increase number of readers following you. This in turn will increase traffic to your profile which will lead to more people reading your other articles. Ultimately, this will lead to more sharing of your articles.
Other things you can do...
Engage with the reader. Ask them questions? Make them think.
Link to other articles you have written.
Share your articles on Facebook, Google+, and Twitter.
Add article links to signatures. Rotate signatures to direct traffic to your articles.
Become active in throughout allnurses - post replies - create threads - get noticed ... The more visible you are the more people will see your signature and visit your profile page.
Write often to create a following.