Writing your first Wikipedia article

Back in 2008, I wrote up instructions on the WikiProject Oregon blog:

Writing your first Wikipedia article

I just looked it over and — amazingly — I see very little that I’d change in 2015. The only things I can think of:

  • Consider using the Visual Editor (which you can enable in your user preferences) for starting a new article; this will make many technical tasks easier (such as linking other articles, formatting citations, or illustrating the article)
  • To create a draft in your user space (as suggested in the original), there is now a much easier shortcut to create the page — simply click the “Sandbox” link at the top of the screen.
  • If you take that approach, DO NOT submit the article by means of the big blue “Submit your draft for review!” button. Seriously! If you have created a decent article, you will only hurt your chances if you go down that path. Instead, just find the “Move page” link when you think it’s ready to publish, and give it a new title.

Experienced Wikipedians: any other updates on how to create your first article — in 2015? The process is still a pain in the neck, but — at least it’s pretty consistent!

About Pete Forsyth

Pete Forsyth is the principal of Wiki Strategies, and a Wikipedia expert. Full bio here: wikistrategies.net/pete-forsyth
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