Help:Editing

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Hello! We are glad that you are interested in helping us to make the Coppermind even better. This page should give you a general introduction to editing. If you have any questions not addressed here or anything here is unclear, please don’t hesitate to ask or get in contact with the staff. The most important thing to know is that you don’t need to be worried about messing things up. If you want to try something, go for it. In the worst case, if something manages to go very wrong, one of the staff will be able to help you revert the article to an earlier state.

Essentially, if you know how to use a basic word processor, you can edit the wiki. On every article there is a tab at the top of the page that says Edit. Clicking this will take you to a basic text editor where you can add to the page or edit the text that is already there. On longer articles, there will also be an edit button next to each section heading that will take you to a text editor for just that section. If you want to ignore all of the wiki formatting tools and just add content or edit grammar, that is fine. If you are interested in doing more with formatting, read on.

Where Should I Start?[edit]

First off, we suggest you take a look at your user page. This page is yours to experiment on as you please (and is also a place you can introduce yourself.) We look forward to meeting you! Once you have checked that out, you can dig into editing the main content of the wiki.

Sometimes when you are browsing the wiki or looking something up you come across a page where you identify something that can be better. When that happens, go for it!

If you want to help but don’t already have a particular page in mind, deciding where to work can be overwhelming. To help with this, we have systems in place to help you narrow in on an article to help with. Every content page in the wiki is classified as a stub, partial or complete. Complete articles might still have room for polishing, but they have all of the information we know on the relevant topic. Partial articles are on significant topics and have some information but still need someone to come add more information. Stubs are essentially placeholders for articles that need to be written. If you are new to editing, finding a stub or partial article and adding information can be a good place to start. Each of the following links takes you to a page that sorts all of the articles related to that series by their status:


What’s Up With All the Curly Braces?[edit]

When you click the Edit tab, it takes you to a text box with a few buttons for basic formatting. You will notice that in addition to the text that appears on the page, there are also things enclosed in curly braces. These are called templates and are how we add the infobox at the top of the page, formally add references, format quotes, and other such things. If you want to, you are welcome to ignore them and just add/edit basic text. You are also welcome to add citations in an informal way and one of the wiki wizards will be happy to formalize things for you later. If you want to learn how to format quotes and references, follow the above links.


Basic Text Formatting[edit]

Headings[edit]

You can create a section heading by enclosing the desired text in paired equals signs, eg:

 == Title of Section Heading == 

Links[edit]

If you want to link to another article in the Coppermind, enclose the title of that article in double square braces. For example, if you want to link to the page about axehounds, you would type

 [[axehound]]s 

to get the link axehounds.

If you want to make your link have a different text than the article it links to, you would type

 [[allomancy|burning metals]]

to get the link burning metals which redirects to the page on Allomancy.

A general purpose external link footnote can be created by using the syntax

{{ref|text=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brandon_Sanderson}}

which will produce a footnote[1] link to the references section at the bottom of the article, inserting whatever comes after the "text=" tag. In this example, the text is a hyperlink, but any text can be inserted.

See Help:Cite for additional templates for linking to specific types of resources, such as Brandon's tweets.

Lists[edit]

To format a list of items, you prepend each item with a * or # character, each item on a new line.

Adding References[edit]

If you don’t have a book or ebook handy to find which chapter a fact is in, feel free to just put {{cite}} where you would put the reference. This leaves us a reminder that the information on that page needs a citation.

If you do know which chapter the material comes from, adding {{book ref|BOOK|CHAPTER}}, where you replace BOOK with the relevant title or a standard abbreviation and CHAPTER with the chapter number, will add a footnote reference. If formatting this makes you uncomfortable, you are also welcome to use whatever reference system you prefer and someone will be happy to convert them to our standard system.

We have reference templates for more than just citing book chapters. If you are interested, see Help:Cite. This page is still a work in progress, so if anything is confusing, please ask.

The Category System[edit]

At the bottom of the article, you will notice a list of categories. These are a way for us to group related articles to make them easy to search for. For example, most articles have a series category, eg Category: Mistborn which includes all articles about content in the Mistborn books, and is included as a navigation box at the bottom, eg {{mistborn}}

The infobox at the top of most articles also has information which will include that article in a number of different categories. For example, the {{character}} template for a Mistborn character will add Category: Characters and Category: Scadrians, which is a collection of all characters on the planet Scadrial. If we know that the character is an Allomancer (for example), the infobox will have a row that looks like this:

|abilities = {{tag+|Thug}}

which adds the Category: Allomancers to the article, and also adds a link to the Pewter page. This can get tricky at times, so we are working on a help page to explain it in more detail. In the meantime, if you see an issue with categories that you aren’t sure how to fix, contact Joe and he will be happy to help.

Other Syntax[edit]