Archive FAQ > Works and Drafts

What is a work?

At the moment, 'work' on the Archive refers to individual fanfics. In the future, works will also encompass other kinds of fanwork such as vids and fanart, which is why we use the generic term, but we haven't yet built this functionality. Stay tuned! If you'd like to add your thoughts to how we should host fanart, we have an ongoing discussion about options here.

How do I post a new work?

You must have an account on the Archive and be logged in to post a new work. You can follow the 'Post New' link at the top right-hand corner of the screen, or you can select this option from the top right of your dashboard. This will bring up the 'Post New Work' form - just fill in the required information and select post!

How do I import a work?

If you already have your work posted on another site, you can import it rather than copying and pasting. You can read more about importing in Importing and Mass Editing.

What information can I include on a work?

You can include a wide range of information on a work. If there's not a specific field for the information you want to add, remember you can use the summary and the notes to enter anything you want.

  • The following are required fields when posting a work: Rating, Archive Warnings, Fandom, Title, and Work Text. (You can select 'Not Rated' and 'Choose Not To Warn', but you can't leave those fields blank - for more information on Ratings and Warnings, please consult the TOS FAQ.)
  • You can also add a Category, Characters, Relationships, Tags, Notes (displayed at the beginning and/or end of the work), a Summary, and a link to a related work on the Archive.
  • Your author name appears on the work by default; you can change which name it displays under by selecting a pseud.
  • If the work was written with someone else, you can add a co-author.
  • If the work is part of a Collection or Challenge you can post directly to that Collection.
  • If the work is a gift for someone else, you can indicate the recipient.
  • If the work is a remix or inspired by another work, you can link to the other work.
  • If the work is part of a series, you can add or create a series.
  • You can break the work into multiple chapters with individual chapter titles.
  • The date the work was posted is entered by default; if you want to display a different date, you can opt to backdate the work.
  • You can choose to show your work to register users only.
  • While all works in all languages will appear in the Works and Fandoms indices, you can indicate which language you work is in which, in addition, will automatically sort it onto the Languages list for those searching by language. Find out more about Languages and Translation.

How do I edit a work?

When you are logged in, you'll find 'Edit' and 'Edit Tags' links on your own works anywhere they appear on the Archive. They display at the bottom left-hand corner in the 'blurb' view, and on the top right-hand corner when you're looking at an individual work you own. The 'Edit' link takes you to the 'Edit Work' form which allows you to make any changes you'd like. The 'Edit Tags' link takes you to a form that only allows you to change the tags in the header information. Changes will not be saved until you select 'Update'.

There is also the option to edit the basic metadata on multiple works at once. Go to the 'My Works' page under My Dashboard and follow the 'Edit Multiple Works' link in the top right. You'll be taken to an edit page listing all the works under your pseud. Check the boxes next to the works you want to edit and choose 'Edit Checked' at the bottom right. The changes will be applied to all of the works selected. Please note that making edits in this form will replace all the old data.

How do I delete a work?

  • When you are logged in, you'll find a 'Delete' link on the top right-hand corner when you are viewing an individual work you own.
  • If you edit a work, you will find a 'Delete Work' link in the top right-hand corner of the 'Edit Work' form.
  • Please delete with caution - deleted works cannot be retrieved! If you would like people to be able to read your work, but you no longer want your name associated with it, you could consider Orphaning.

How do I save a work as a draft?

When you preview a work before posting, a draft will be saved to the database. If you choose 'Cancel' instead of 'Post', then the work will be saved to your drafts, which you can find under My Dashboard. Drafts are saved for one month from creation, after which they are automatically cleared from the database.

How do I save a chapter as a draft?

When you preview a chapter, and exit the preview screen without posting, it will be added to your work as a drafted chapter. These will not be added to your drafts, found under My Dashboard, but directly to the work they were posted to. In order to delete, edit or post the draft, go to the story and either choose the respective chapter in the chapter index or scroll down to the bottom of the page in full work view. You will find the draft chapters attached at the end of your work.

How do I edit a draft?

Currently the draft feature can not be used to repeatedly edit and save a work or chapter. The draft will only be saved once. You can then edit and post in order to retain those changes. If you edit your draft, preview and don't post, the changes will be lost and the draft reverts back to the first version that has been saved.
Our coders are working on improving this feature.

How do I control who can see my works?

You can choose to make your posted works public, or restrict them to logged-in users of the Archive. If you'd like to restrict your works, just tick the option 'Only show your work to registered users' on the 'Post / Edit Work' form.

Drafts are only visible to you.

How do I make a link to another work in the Archive?

If your work is inspired by or a remix of another work in the Archive, simply paste the url into the 'Post / Edit Work' form and the association will show up on your posted work. For external works you will need to specify Title and Author, but for other works on the Archive only the url is necessary; the title and author will be supplied automatically.

What is the Rich Text Editor? What is the HTML Editor?

There are two options for posting works and chapters on the Archive:

  • The Rich Text Editor lets you add formatting, links and pictures to text without using HTML tags. It also has an option for pasting from Word which will preserve some of your Word formatting, although please note that this is buggy. The Rich Text Editor is only available for your work text.
  • The HTML editor allows you to change the look of your text with HTML tags. It can be used in any place you can submit text, although some fields permit only a small subsection of allowed tags. You can see a full list of the allowed HTML on the Archive.

Please note that if you paste in a work in HTML mode, then switch to the Rich Text editor, then your line breaks will be lost unless you hardcoded them in. This is a known bug - we're working to fix it, but it's tricky, so it's a long-term fix.

What HTML can be used on works?

You can use HTML tags to style text on works. The allowed HTML is as follows: a, abbr, acronym, address, alt, b, big, blockquote, br, caption, center, cite, class, code, col, colgroup, datetime, dd, del, dfn, div, dl, dt, em, h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6, height, hr, href, i, img, ins, kbd, li, name, ol, p, pre, q, samp, small, span, src, strike, strong, sub, sup, table, tbody, td, tfoot, th, thead, title, tr, tt, u, ul, var, width.

What other types of formatting are available?

For more elaborate styling, you need to use a work skin - this is basically custom CSS. For details on how to use work skins, check out our tutorial on Styling works.

Can I use inline CSS in works?

No, sorry. You will have to define your styles in a "work skin" and apply them to your fics by adding classes and IDs to your HTML. For more information on how to do this, check out our tutorial on Styling works.

We've chosen to do it this way in order to preserve the central feature of CSS: separating style from content. By creating reusable classes for your fics you can control all your formatting in one stylesheet, and we can easily strip your CSS from a story (important for accessibility reasons) without interfering with the site caching (important for performance reasons). Everybody wins!

How do I add a chapter to a work?

Once you have created a work, you will find an 'Add chapter' link on the top right-hand corner when you view or edit that individual work.

How do I make a series?

A series is a set of related stories, each of which are complete on their own. On the 'Post Work' form, there is the option to make your work part of a series. Select the option 'This work is part of a series' and then either choose one of your existing series from the drop box or enter in the name of a new series.

How do I manage my series?

You can manage your series by following the 'My Series' link on your dashboard in My Dashboard. All your series will be listed. Selecting the series' title will take you to the list of the individual works within that series. If you are on the page of an individual work, the series title is also linked in the header.

On the series page you can 'Edit' the following in your series: title, pseud, add co-author, series description, series notes. You can also reorder the works within your series.

How do I indicate that a work will have more than one chapter?

When you create a new work, you can choose to mark it as a chaptered fic by ticking the box next to 'Does this work have multiple chapters?' This will give you the option to say how many chapters the work has (if you know already) and enter a title for your first chapter. The total number of chapters will be displayed on the work, and until you have posted all your chapters it will be marked as a work-in-progress.

How do I add a co-author to a work?

You can list another Archive account holder as a co-author on your work. On the 'Post / Edit Work' form, you'll find an option to 'Add co-authors'. Just type the name of the user you want to add as co-author (it will suggest names as you type). You can only add an existing Archive account holder as a co-author - sorry! You can still list any other co-authors in your notes.

When you're co-authoring a work, what does each author have permission to do?

Any author of a work can edit or delete the work and add new authors. You can't remove someone else as a co-author, though, or orphan the entire work. When you add a new co-author, that person will receive a notification email and have the option to take her name off the work.

Can I post my artwork on the archive?

You can't upload images to our server at the moment, with the exception of your user icon, but you're welcome to embed images hosted elsewhere.

We do plan to host fanart on the Archive but we are still designing how we will do this. Join us in the discussion about fanart.

Can I post my vids on the archive?

Video embeds are working from Youtube, Vimeo, blip.tv, Dailymotion, Viddler, Metacafe and 4shared. We have to limit it to specific sites for security reasons, but if you use another hosting site and want us to add it, please submit a support request with a link to the site and we’ll add it if we can.