Hi Folks 🙂
things are getting busier around here. More Members need more attention, and our available time is getting a bit thin. As mentioned in the New Year Update, we will be taking on a new Core Crew Member, probably from next month. That will free up our time, to get on with important stuff like new sites, and updating AoZ.
One of the more pressing requirements, is some help with the blog posts. When we are busy, blogs often get pushed to the bottom of the to-do pile (I got about 80 currently pending). It’s a shame because we have some great posts, and the blog is one of the important parts of our community. Your content and submissions keep the site fresh and interesting, and let others know a bit about you. I’m always being nagged about posts, I can dig it 🙂 Some of you put a lot of work into those posts and I don’t like to let you down. It’s just a matter of time available, and priorities. So, it’s time to bite the bullet and get some help with that.
Blog posts are not as easy as just hitting publish. I have to go through each post carefully – check spelling and grammar, and format it nicely. Some bits need a bit of a rewrite – maybe it’s not quite right for the site, maybe it’s not quite accurate.
I also have to do the post header. There is an art to doing those headers – picking the right image to accompany the post, one that isn’t copyright – plus trying to keep each post looking a bit different so we don’t have loads of posts looking the same on the blog page. Some graphics skill is needed, to lay out the title, fonts etc. In an ideal world, it would be great to get someone to do some images to go into the post bodies too.
All this, requires a range of skills, and the work involved would probably be too much for 1 person alone. So, we are looking to put together a Blog Team to handle this. A crew of volunteers will also be useful in the event that someone has to stop – then all is not lost, we can still replace the missing Member(s), and continue. The help we need for this, is as follows:
The Blog Manager will be the Member in charge of the Blog Team. They will liaise with me (ultimately, our new Core Team Member), and get all the outstanding Blog Posts, in text files, in their raw format (i.e. as they have been posted).
She / He will take those text files, and farm them out to Blog Editors, for tidying up. He / She will chase / push the Editors to get the texts back, if they are not coming back, send those posts to a different, more reliable Editor. So keeping an eye on folks that deliver is important. Also, maintaining a waiting list of potential Editors, in case any drop out. Because for sure some will drop out.
The Manager will also need to liaise with our graphics folks, so they can put together the header images. Again, we’ll need a waiting list of graphics folks, in case any drop out. I’ll probably have to help with initial recruitment for that.
When the Graphics and edited posts are complete, these will need to be zipped up and sent back to me, ready for publishing. It’s not a difficult job, but we do need someone proactive and reliable – someone ok with, or experienced in running a Team – someone who will stick with it. Most important – we need someone SELF MANAGING – i.e. not coming back to us every 2 minutes about this and that. If we are needing to micro-manage you, then it will likely take longer to do the blog posts than doing them ourselves – experienced Managers and Team Leaders will be aware of this anyway.
If you think you fit the bill, please drop a mail to Support, and we can discuss further.
As explained above, we need folks to help out with tidying up and formatting blog posts. You’ll need a good grasp of English, spelling and grammar. You’ll need to understand how we need things set out, and be able to stick to instructions. Site regulars are more attractive. To spread load (and risk) we are looking for a bunch of Editors. That way, the workload is occasional, and not a complete drag. You can do a few bits here and there. Obviously, the more you do, the better 🙂 I mention all this, because in honesty, sometimes it can get a bit tedious. We have blog posts, 8 sides of A4, dense blocks of text with no grammar or spell check, little punctuation. So, better we spread this out across a bunch of Volunteers. If you fit the bill, and would like to help out with this, please contact us.
So Gang, you’ve seen the blog posts and the headers. You know how they should look – how they are set out, image size, the fonts used (Amatic, Bevan) etc. We appreciate all the samples and portfolios folks have submitted. The stumbling block, always, when recruiting graphics peeps, is that the ability to do project A, does not give a clear indication of someones ability to do project B. If that makes sense.
We’re going to approach this bit a bit differently this time. Instead of asking for examples of previous work, what we would like you to do – if you are interested – is to have a go at doing a header for a blog post, and see what you come up with. I’m not actually dead-set on keeping all the headers looking uniform, I just do them that way because it’s faster. If you want to try something a bit different I’d be interested to see. As long as any text is clear, and the image size is correct, get creative with it by all means. 🙂 You can pick any blog post you like on the site, to experiment with – or if you want specific posts, maybe this one, or this one.
If you are looking like the person to help with this, there is a small learning curve re. knowing what background images you can use, what you shouldn’t, where to find them, etc. Again, workload would suggest we probably need more than 1 graphics volunteer for this role. This, is also probably the trickiest role to fill, so worst case, if we don’t find anyone, I can continue to do the headers myself. They don’t take me too long, provided we have the rest of the team in place.
If you are interested in helping with this, please send your header samples to Support, and we can have a chat from there.
As I said, we do appreciate all your submissions, a lot of great stuff. Now, as I also mentioned, I get nagged a lot by posters, on account of the delay in publishing posts. Folks – IF (some of) you took a moment, to grammar and spell check your posts, format them properly BEFORE posting – then it would not be such a huge amount of work to publish them, and we could get them on the site quicker. So, if you find yourself waiting for your posts to be published – do yourself a favour, and use a proper word processor. OpenOffice is free, and you can download it here. Thanks for your understanding.
HOW TO APPLY
In all instances, please get in touch with Support.
Please don’t apply if you are not 101% serious. We appreciate the good intentions – but time taken orientating people, with nothing to show for it at the end – is the opposite of help, you dig 😉
In return for your assistance, we will credit you on the blog posts you do. Blog Manager / Editor / Graphics by. This will help you get more visibility on the network. Folks who are regular and reliable, and who do a good job, are best placed for selection when other opportunities arise around here. ILZ started out helping out as a volunteer, and now he is on the Core Team and producing movies. So keep that in mind. We generally recruit internally.
So, in the first instance, please get in touch, and lets get on top of these blog posts once and for all. Thanks in advance for your assistance 🙂