Archive FAQ > Posting and Editing

What kind of fanworks can I post to the Archive?

You can post fanworks that consist of text, images, video, or audio files, or any combination of these. You can also post Spotify and 8Tracks playlists.

Currently, the Archive is only able to host text. Other file types need to be hosted on an external website. You can then use HTML to embed the externally hosted file in an Archive post. You can also post a link to the site where the file is hosted. Refer to these FAQs for more help:

How do I post a new work?

To post a new work, use the "Post New" button on your Dashboard, or follow the "Post" link at the top right of any Archive page. This will take you to the Post New Work page. Here, you will fill out a series of fields with information about the work, and then publish the work itself.

IMPORTANT: Please note that we do not recommend composing your work within the Post New Work page. This page will not automatically save as you go. To avoid losing work, it's best to compose in an external application and then copy and paste your content onto Archive of Our Own.

The information you will fill out is divided into four groups of fields: Tags, Preface, Associations, and Privacy. Next comes the Work Text field, and finally the "Preview", "Post Without Preview", and "Cancel" buttons. Required fields are marked with an asterisk.

Tags

The Tags section contains the following fields:

  • Rating: You must either give your work a rating or select the "Not Rated" option. There are no hard and fast rules about what rating is appropriate for what kinds of content, but as a basic guideline, General Audiences is intended for the least graphic/explicit material, followed by Teen and Up Audiences, Mature, and finally Explicit as the most graphic/explicit. Misleading ratings may result in user complaints, which will be dealt with in accordance with the Terms of Service. The Rating field cannot be left blank, though you may leave it set to the "Not Rated" default value if you wish. A user accessing a "Not Rated", "Mature", or "Explicit"-rated work will receive a warning (unless they have disabled it in their preferences) to advise that the work may contain adult content.
  • Archive Warnings: Warnings are intended to allow users to avoid viewing specific types of content. The four Archive Warnings are Graphic Depictions of Violence, Major Character Death, Rape/Non-Con (for works depicting non-consensual sexual activity), and Underage (for works depicting sexual situations involving minors). Select "No Archive Warnings Apply" to affirm that the work does not contain any content that fits into these categories. Select "Choose Not To Use Archive Warnings" to indicate that any of the warnings might apply and users should proceed at their own risk; this is a good choice if you are not sure whether any warnings apply. As with ratings, failure to use appropriate warnings may result in complaints and action by the Abuse committee, in accordance with the Terms of Service. The Archive Warnings field cannot be left blank.
  • Fandoms: You must add one or more fandom tags to your work. When completing this field, you can either select from the autocomplete list of fandoms or manually enter names of fandoms that do not show up in the list. Different fandom names must be separated by commas. You can add as many fandom tags as you like. To remove a fandom tag that you have added, use the red "×" button next to the fandom name. For more information about how fandom tags work, refer to What are the different types of tags? The Fandoms field cannot be left blank.
  • Category: You may indicate one or more categories of sexual/romantic relationships that are depicted in the work. The available categories are F/F (female/female relationships), F/M (female/male relationships), Gen (no romantic/sexual relationships, or relationships that are not the main focus of the work), M/M (male/male relationships), Multi (more than one kind of relationship, or a relationship with multiple partners), and Other (other relationships). You may select as many of these options as you like, or you may leave this field blank.
  • Relationships: You may add one or more relationship tags to your work. When completing this field, you can either select from the autocomplete list of relationships or manually enter names of relationships that do not show up in the list. In the autocomplete, relationships are listed using the full names of the characters involved (for example, "Elizabeth Bennet/Fitzwilliam Darcy"). Different relationship names must be separated by commas. You can add as many relationship tags as you like. To remove a relationship tag that you have added, use the red "×" button next to the relationship name. For more information about how relationship tags work, refer to What are the different types of tags? This field can be left blank.
  • Characters: You may indicate one or more characters who appear in your work. When completing this field, you can either select from the autocomplete list of characters or manually enter names of characters that do not show up in the list. Different character names must be separated by commas. You can add as many character tags as you like. To remove a character tag that you have added, use the red "×" button next to the character name. For more information about how character tags work, refer to What are the different types of tags? This field can be left blank.
  • Additional Tags: You may enter any other tags you wish to give your work. Different tags must be separated by commas. If a tag is already in use on the Archive, it will show up as an autocomplete suggestion. To remove a tag that you have added, use the red "×" button next to the tag name. For more information about how additional/freeform tags work, refer to What are the different types of tags? This field can be left blank.

Preface

The Preface section contains the following fields:

  • Title: Give your work a title. This field cannot be left blank.
  • Author/Pseuds: If you have added pseuds to your account, this field will allow you to indicate which of your pseuds you would like to associate with this work. You may select more than one. You cannot post a work anonymously. (If you wish to anonymize your work, you may orphan it. Refer to the Orphaning FAQ for more information.) This field won't be available if you haven't added any pseuds to your account. Refer to How do I add a new pseud? for more information.
  • Add co-authors?: After selecting this option, you may enter the user names or pseuds of any other Archive members who are co-creators of the work. Autocomplete suggestions will appear to help you. All co-creators will be fully able to edit (or even delete) the work. Anyone who is subscribed to any of the co-creators will receive an email notification when the work is posted or updated.
    • Please note: it is very important to select the correct account when adding a co-creator, because you won't be able to remove them once the work has been posted. They will need to remove themselves.
    For more information on this field, refer to How do I add or remove co-creators?
  • Summary: You may provide a short text description of the content of the work. This text will appear in work lists (along with the title, creator pseud(s), and tags), allowing users to decide which works they want to access.
  • Notes: There are two separate fields for notes appearing at the beginning or the end of the work. Once you check "at the beginning" or "at the end", a text field will appear for you to fill in. Notes fields are optional; you may use either, both, or neither of them.

Associations

The Associations section contains the following fields:

  • Does this fulfill a challenge assignment?: Your open challenge assignments, if any, will be displayed in this field. If the work you are posting is meant to fulfill one of them, select it here. This will automatically add your work to the challenge collection (or submit it for approval) and also mark your assignment as fulfilled for the challenge moderators. For more information, refer to the Collections, Challenges, and Exchanges FAQ. If you don't have any open assignments, this field won't be available.
  • Fulfill a Claim: If you have claimed any prompts in a prompt meme, your claims will be listed here. Select the prompt that your work is intended to fulfill. In addition to fulfilling your claim, this will automatically place the work in the collection associated with the prompt meme and will designate the prompter as a recipient. For more information, refer to the Collections, Challenges, and Exchanges FAQ. If you haven't claimed any prompts, this field won't be available.
  • Post to Collections / Challenges: If you wish to post this work to any collections or challenges, enter collection names as a comma-separated list. Collection names will be auto-completed for you if you have JavaScript enabled. If you don't have JavaScript enabled, you will need to make sure you are using the unique name of each collection, which you can find in the URL for the collection's index page. For example, the Yuletide 2013 collection has the unique name "yuletide2013". For more information, refer to the Collections, Challenges, and Exchanges FAQ.
  • Gift this work to: If your work is a gift for someone else or in their honor, you can enter their name or pseud here, and it will be displayed on the work, right under the byline. Recipients do not need to be registered users of the Archive, although the autocomplete will offer you matching user names and pseuds if there are any. We will notify registered users if they are selected as recipients of a work.
  • This work is a remix, a translation, a podfic, or was inspired by another work: If you wish to acknowledge another work as the source or inspiration for the work you are posting, select this option. When you select the option, a dialogue box will appear where you can fill in information about the work you are acknowledging. If that work is on the Archive, it may include a link to your work if the creator approves it.
  • This work is part of a series: Select this option to indicate that the work you are posting is part of a series. You can select the name of one of your existing series, or enter the name of a new series. For more information about series, refer to the Series FAQ.
  • This work has multiple chapters: Select this option if your work has multiple chapters. (Note: if you don't select this option, you can still add chapters later, but selecting it now will let fans know to expect further installments.) You may then indicate how many chapters the work will have and give the current chapter a title. Both of these fields are optional. If you are posting a new work, whatever you put in the Work Text field will be treated as the first chapter. For information about adding more chapters, go to How do I add a new chapter to a work?
  • Set a different publication date: Select this option to backdate your work. In chronological work lists, it will be ordered according to the date you set here, not the actual date on which you posted it. It will still show up in RSS feeds as a newly posted work. You cannot set the value to a date in the future.
  • Choose a language: Select an option from the list to indicate what language your work is in. English is selected by default. The option you select here will not affect how your work is displayed. (For example, if you select English and then paste in Japanese characters, the Japanese characters will still be displayed.) Rather, this field is important because it helps users search for works in the language they want.
  • Select work skin: Skins are customized stylesheets that control the way Archive content is displayed. If you have created any work skins, you can select one here. Refer to the Skins and Archive Interface FAQ for more information.

Privacy

The Privacy section contains the following fields:

  • Only show your work to registered users: If you select this option, only logged-in Archive users will be able to find and access your work.
  • Anonymous commenting disabled: When this feature is enabled, only logged-in Archive users will be able to comment on your work.

Work Text

The final field is the Work Text field. Here, you will paste the content that makes up the work itself. If you have selected "This work has multiple chapters", whatever you paste here will be treated as the first chapter. Go to What is the HTML editor?, What is the Rich Text editor?, and Can I use CSS formatting? for more information about how this field works.

Preview, Post, or Cancel

At the end of the form are buttons labeled "Preview", "Post Without Preview", and "Cancel". The "Preview" button allows you to check how your work will be formatted so that you can make changes before posting, and will also save a draft of your work. "Post Without Preview" will post your work immediately. "Cancel" will take you back to your Dashboard; since the form does not save automatically, this will result in any changes being lost, so use with caution.

Refer to How do I save a work/chapter as a draft? and How do I edit or post a draft I've saved? for more information on drafts.

How do I add a new chapter to a work?

To add a chapter to a work, navigate to the work and then select the "Add Chapter" button at the top of the page. This will take you to the Post New Chapter page. Here, you can paste your content and fill out information about the new chapter. Note that chapters do not get their own tags. If you want to add new tags to reflect the content of your new chapter, refer to How do I edit the tags on a work?

IMPORTANT: Please note that we do not recommend composing your work within the Post New Chapter page. This page will not automatically save as you go. To avoid losing work, it's best to compose in an external application and then copy and paste your content onto Archive of Our Own.

The information you will fill out is divided into two groups of fields: Name, Order and Date and Chapter Preface. These are followed by the Chapter Text field and the "Preview", "Post Without Preview", and "Cancel" buttons.

Name, Order and Date

The Name, Order and Date section contains the following fields:

  • Chapter Title: Give your chapter a title. If you leave this field blank, the chapter number will be used.
  • Chapter Number: Give this chapter a number. There are actually two number fields here. The first is for your chapter number, which defaults to putting your new chapter at the end of the list. If you give it a number that already belongs to a chapter you have posted, the new chapter will be inserted before the existing chapter. The second field is for the total number of chapters in the work. If you leave this field blank, the total number will show up as a question mark. Users generally interpret this to mean that you don't know how many chapters the work will have.
  • Chapter Publication Date: You may use this field to backdate this chapter if you wish, which will affect how the work is displayed in chronological lists on the site. You cannot set the value to a date in the future. Select the blue question mark icon next to the field name (alt text: "Backdating help") for more details about what will be affected.

Preface

The Chapter Preface section contains the following fields:

  • Author / Pseud(s): If you have added pseuds to your account, this field will allow you to indicate which of your pseuds you would like to associate with this chapter. You may select more than one. This field won't be available if you haven't added any pseuds to your account. Refer to How do I add a new pseud? for more information.
  • Add co-authors?: After selecting this option, you may enter the user names or pseuds of any other Archive members who are co-creators of the chapter. Autocomplete suggestions will appear to help you. All co-creators will be fully able to edit (or even delete) the chapter. Anyone who is subscribed to any of the co-creators will receive an email notification when the chapter is posted.
    • Please note: it is very important to select the correct account when adding a co-creator, because you won't be able to remove them once the chapter has been posted. They will need to remove themselves.
    For more information on this field, refer to How do I add or remove co-creators?
  • Chapter Summary: You may provide a short text description of the content of the chapter.
  • Chapter Notes: There are two separate fields for notes appearing at the beginning or the end of the chapter. Once you check "at the beginning" or "at the end", a text field will appear for you to fill in. Notes fields are optional; you may use either, both, or neither.

Chapter Text

Here, you will paste the content of your chapter. Go to What is the HTML editor?, What is the Rich Text editor?, and Can I use CSS formatting? for more information about how this field works.

Preview, Post, or Cancel

At the end of the form are buttons labeled "Preview", "Post Without Preview", and "Cancel". The "Preview" button allows you to check how your work will be formatted so that you can make changes before posting, and will also save a draft of your chapter. Refer to How do I edit or post a draft I've saved? for more information about how chapter drafts work. The "Post Without Preview" button will post the chapter immediately. "Cancel" will take you back to the View Work page; since the form does not save automatically, this will result in any changes being lost, so use with caution.

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

In the Associations section of the Post or Edit Work pages, you can select "This work has multiple chapters". This will give you the option to say how many chapters the work will have (if you know already) and to 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 incomplete.

If you don't indicate how many chapters the work will have, the total number of chapters will be left as a question mark. Users generally interpret this to mean that you don't know how many chapters the work will have. When you post the last chapter, be sure to fill out the total to make it clear that your work is complete.

How do I save a work/chapter as a draft?

To save a draft of your work, fill out the Post New Work page or the Edit Work page, including all required fields (those marked with an asterisk), and then press the "Preview" button. This will take you to the Preview page, where you can check how your work will display once posted. A message will appear to advise you that a draft has been created and that it will be deleted one month in the future. To learn how to retrieve your draft, go to How do I edit or post a draft I've saved?

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 chapter, go to the work and either choose the draft chapter in the chapter index or scroll down to the bottom of the page in Entire Work view. You will find the draft chapters attached at the end of your work.

How do I post a series?

A series is a set of works that a creator has decided to group together, usually because they form a sequence or share a common universe. On the Post or Edit Work pages, select "This work is part of a series" and then either choose one of your existing series from the list or enter the name of a new series. Refer to How do I add works to a series? for more information.

How do I edit or post a draft I've saved?

If you have saved a draft, as described in How do I save a work/chapter as a draft?, you can come back to it later to edit or post. Draft works and draft chapters are retrieved in slightly different ways.

For works, the link to your unposted drafts can be found on your Dashboard. To reach the Dashboard, select the "Hi, [user name]!" link in the top bar (in the default skin), and select "My Dashboard" from the menu. In the sidebar (found at the top of the page when you're using a mobile device), select "Drafts". This will take you to a list of your unposted drafts. From here, buttons allow you to edit the work draft, edit tags, add a chapter, or post or delete the draft.

You can also select the "Post" link at the top right of all Archive pages, and choose "From Draft" from the list.

Draft works are deleted automatically a month after creation. Their content is not emailed to you and cannot be recovered. We strongly advise you to avoid composing in the Archive posting form and to always keep a backup copy elsewhere.

Draft chapters are not found under My Dashboard, but rather are directly added to the work they belong to. In order to delete, edit, or post the draft chapter, go to the work and either choose the draft chapter in the chapter index or scroll down to the bottom of the page in Entire Work view. You will find the draft chapters attached at the end of your work. Go to the chapter you want to work with, then select "Post Chapter", "Edit Chapter", or "Delete Chapter".

How do I edit a work?

To edit a work, navigate to the work and then select the "Edit" button. The "Edit" button also appears on other pages where your works are listed, such as your Works page and on series index pages. This button will take you to the Edit Work page, which contains all of the same fields and options as the Post New Work page. Refer to How do I post a new work? for a description of the available options.

How do I edit the tags on a work?

If you want to edit only the tags on a work without making any changes to the work content, you can use the "Edit Tags" button. This button appears at the top of each work, as well as on any index page that lists your works. It will take you to the Edit Work Tags page, where you can edit the work's rating, warnings, fandoms, category, relationship tags, character tags, and additional/freeform tags. Visit the Tags FAQ for more information about how tags work.

How do I delete a work?

You can delete a work using the "Delete Work" button, which appears at the top of the View Work page and the Edit Work page. You can also delete multiple works as a batch using the "Edit Works" button (refer to How do I edit multiple works at the same time?). Whichever way you choose to delete the work, you will be asked to confirm your choice before the work is permanently deleted.

Please note that deleting a work will also delete all associated comments, bookmarks, kudos and hits. The content of deleted works and associated comments cannot be restored. You will receive a copy of your deleted work via email; you will not receive any records of associated kudos, comments, hits or bookmarks.

Another option is to orphan your work. This allows your work to remain on the Archive while removing your association with it. Refer to the Orphaning FAQ for more information about how this works.

How do I edit a chapter of a multi-chaptered work?

For a work with more than one chapter, the Work Text field won't initially be present on the Edit Work page. Instead, you have a few options for editing chapter by chapter. The first option is to go to the Edit Work page (refer to How do I edit a work?). At the top, you will find numbered buttons that will take you to the individual editing page for each chapter.

The second option is to navigate to the work itself, go to the chapter you want to edit, and press the "Edit Chapter" button that appears above the chapter title.

You can also reach the Edit Chapter page via the "Manage Chapters" button at the top of the Edit Work page.

How do I delete a chapter?

There are two ways to delete a chapter from a work. The first is through the "Manage Chapters" button at the top of the Edit Work page. This button will take you to a page that lists your chapters, with an "Edit" and "Delete" button for each one. Go to How do I edit a work? to learn how to reach the Edit Work page.

You can also delete chapters from within the work itself. Navigate to the chapter you wish to view, then find the "Delete Chapter" button, which appears above the chapter title.

After selecting the "Delete" button, a dialogue window will appear asking if you are sure you want to delete the chapter. Select "OK" and the chapter will be deleted. Please note that deleting a chapter will also delete all associated comments. The content of deleted chapters and associated comments cannot be recovered.

How can I change the order of my chapters?

You can change the order of your chapters through the "Manage Chapters" button at the top of the Edit Work page (refer to How do I edit a work?). On the Manage Chapters page, you can drag and drop the chapters to change their order (if your browser supports this), or you can enter numbers in the box beside each chapter title to indicate your desired order, then select the "Update Positions" button.

How do I edit multiple works at the same time?

It is possible to edit tags and certain other information for multiple works as a batch. To do this, visit your Works index page by selecting "My Works" from the "Hi, [user name]" link at the top of the page (in the default skin). Then select the button labeled "Edit Works". This will take you to the Edit Multiple Works page. Here, all of your works are listed, grouped according to fandom. Check the box next to each work that you wish to edit, then select "Edit". This will allow you to change the rating, warnings, tags, creators, collections, languages, skins, visibility settings, and comment settings. Any fields you change will replace the values you have set for all of the works you have selected to edit. Any fields you leave blank will remain unchanged. Select "Update All Works" when you're finished making changes.

The Edit Multiple Works page also has buttons allowing you to orphan or delete multiple works. Refer to the Orphaning FAQ or How do I delete a work? for more information about these options.

How do I control who can access my works?

You can restrict access to a work so that only logged-in Archive users can access it. To do this, go to the Edit Work page (refer to How do I edit a work?). In the Privacy section, select the option "Only show your work to registered users" and then select the "Update" button.

Can I disable anonymous comments on my work?

You can prevent anyone who is not a logged-in Archive user from commenting on your work. To do this, go to the Edit Work page (refer to How do I edit a work?). In the Privacy section, select the option "Anonymous commenting disabled" and then select the "Post Without Preview" button, or select the "Preview" button and then the "Update" button.

In the Associations section of the Post or Edit Work page (refer to How do I edit a work?), select "This work is a remix, a translation, a podfic, or was inspired by another work" to create a link to the work you want to credit. This will reveal a set of fields where you can enter its URL, title, and other information. If the work is hosted on the Archive, just enter the work's URL. A link that says "Inspired by TITLE by CREATOR" will appear at the top of your work when people access it on the Archive. If you select "This is a translation", the link will say "A translation of TITLE by CREATOR". If the source work is on the Archive, it may include a link to your work if the creator approves it.

How do I add or remove co-creators?

In the Preface section of the Post New Work page (refer to How do I post a new work?), check the box beside "Add co-authors?" and enter your co-creator's user name or pseud in the field provided. When adding a co-creator to an individual chapter, this box appears in the Chapter Preface section of the Post New Chapter page, and works the same way; refer to How do I add a new chapter to a work? You can use the autocomplete suggestions to make sure you're getting your co-creator's correct user name or pseud. If they have multiple pseuds, all their pseuds will show up as autocomplete options. Once you have added the co-creator and saved or posted the work/chapter, that person will be able to edit or delete the work/chapter.

To remove a co-creator before you have previewed or posted the work/chapter, simply use the red "×" button beside their name. After you select "Preview" or "Post", you can no longer remove them. They will need to remove themselves. Refer to How do I remove myself as a creator of a work? for instructions on removing yourself.

How do I remove myself as a creator of a work?

If you are listed as a co-creator of a work, you can remove yourself. On the Edit Work page (refer to How do I edit a work?), find the button labeled "Remove Me As Author". Select "OK" in the dialogue box that comes up, and you will be removed.

If you are the only creator of the work, you cannot remove yourself in this way. If you want to remove your identifying information, you can orphan the work instead. Refer to the Orphaning FAQ for more information.

Can I post works in languages other than English?

Yes! You can post works in any language. To make it easier for users to find your work, you can tell the Archive what language the work is in by using the "Choose a language" list on the Post New Work or Edit Work pages. English is selected by default. If your language is not on the list, you can contact us to let us know.

What is the HTML editor?

When you are posting or editing your work, the Work Text field can be set to either HTML mode or Rich Text mode. To switch between the two modes, use the buttons labeled "Rich Text" and "HTML" in the upper right corner. By default, HTML mode is selected.

In HTML mode, any text you paste into the editor will be interpreted as plain text with limited HTML. Select the blue question mark icon at the top of the Work Text field (alt text: "Html help") for complete information about what kind of HTML is allowed, and to learn how line breaks and other white space in your text will be interpreted. Before posting your work, you can use the "Preview" button to make sure that the work is formatted the way you want.

Refer to the following FAQs for more help with HTML:

IMPORTANT: Please note that we do not recommend composing your work within the Post New Work page. This page will not automatically save as you go. To avoid losing work, it's best to compose in an external application and then copy and paste your content onto Archive of Our Own.

What HTML can be used in works?

The following HTML tags may be used when posting to the Archive:

a, abbr, acronym, address, b, big, blockquote, br, caption, center, cite, code, col, colgroup, dd, del, dfn, div, dl, dt, em, h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6, hr, i, img, ins, kbd, li, ol, p, pre, q, s, samp, small, span, strike, strong, sub, sup, table, tbody, td, tfoot, th, thead, tr, tt, u, ul, var

You can also use the iframe tag to embed multimedia players from approved sites, as described in How do I post a video?, How do I post an audio file?, and How do I post a playlist?

When adding your HTML, always make sure that you are in the HTML editor (refer to What is the HTML editor?). If you're having trouble, select the blue question mark icon at the top of the Work Text field (alt text: "Html help") for some helpful tips. There is also a very detailed HTML Help Page.

What is the Rich Text editor?

When you are posting or editing your work, the Work Text field can be set to either HTML mode or Rich Text mode. To switch between the two modes, use the buttons labeled "Rich Text" and "HTML" in the upper right corner. By default, HTML mode is selected.

When you paste text into the Rich Text editor, most formatting from your word processing program is preserved, although there will be some differences based on your device, browser, and operating system, as well as the source you're pasting from. While in Rich Text mode, you can select the blue question mark icon at the top of the Work Text field (alt text: "Rte help") for more detailed information about how pasting into the Rich Text editor works.

The Rich Text editor also includes a toolbar that you can use to format your work within the editor. The toolbar contains the following groups of options:

  • Font Styles: Highlight the text you wish to edit, then choose italic, bold, underline, or strikethrough.
  • Links and Images: To insert a link, highlight some text and then use the "Insert/edit link" button to assign the link URL. To remove a link, highlight the link text and use the "Remove link" button. To insert an image, place the cursor where you want the image to appear, then use the "Insert/edit image" button to provide the image URL. (For more information about using images, refer to How do I embed an image in a post?)
  • Blockquote: To set off some of your text as a blockquote, select the desired text and use the "Toggle blockquote" button.
  • Horizontal Rule: To insert a horizontal line in your work, place the cursor where you want the line to appear, then use the "Insert horizontal rule" button.
  • List Formatting: To have some of your text display as a bulleted or numbered list, place the list items on separate lines and then select the list text. Then use the "Bullet list" or "Numbered list" buttons.
  • Alignment: By default, text is aligned left. To change the alignment, select the text you want to move and use the "Align left", "Align center", "Align right", or "Justify" buttons.
  • Undo and Redo: Use the "Undo" and "Redo" buttons to step backward and forward in your editing.
  • Text Direction: If you are posting in a language that is formatted from right to left, such as Arabic or Hebrew, select the text you want to format and use the "Right to left" button to ensure that the text will be positioned properly. To change back, use the "Left to right" button.

The Rich Text editor can't be used to embed multimedia files. You will need to use the HTML editor instead. Refer to the following FAQs for more help:

IMPORTANT: Please note that we do not recommend composing your work within the Post New Work page. This page will not automatically save as you go. To avoid losing work, it's best to compose in an external application, then copy and paste your content onto the Archive.

Can I use CSS formatting?

You can apply custom CSS formatting by creating a work skin. Refer to the Skins and Archive Interface FAQ for more information. You cannot use inline CSS in works.

How do I import works from another website?

You can automatically import works to the Archive that you have hosted elsewhere. Find the "Post" menu beside the "Hi, [user name]!" greeting at the top of the page (in the default skin), and select "Import Work". This will take you to the Import New Work page, where you will find the following fields:

  • URLs: Enter the URL(s) of the work or works that you want to import, one per line.
  • Set custom encoding: Select the character encoding of the source that you're importing from. Leave this blank if you don't know, and we will attempt to automatically detect the encoding. Select the blue question mark icon next to the field name (alt text: "Encoding help") for more suggestions about how to use this field.
  • Import as: If you have entered multiple addresses in the URLs field, this option allows you to select whether to import them as multiple works or as chapters of a single work. "Works" is selected by default.
  • Preferences:
    • Post without previewing: If you select this option, then all the URLs you have entered will immediately be posted when you hit the "Import" button at the bottom of the page. If you do not select this option, all of the URLs will be imported as drafts. Go to How do I edit or post a draft I've saved? for information about accessing saved drafts.
    • Lock all imports to registered users only: If you select this option, only registered Archive users will be able to access the works you have imported.
    • Set the following tags and/or notes on all works, overriding whatever the importer finds in the content: By default, the importer will do its best to convert any existing source metadata into Archive tags. If you check this box, the tags you manually enter will replace the automatically detected tags.
  • Tags: The fields in this section work the same as the corresponding sections on the Post New Work page.

Once you have filled out the form, select the "Import" button. If you have only imported one work, this will take you to the Preview page for that work. If you have imported multiple works, you will now be presented with a list of all the drafts you have imported. You will need to post each draft individually, unless you selected "Post without previewing". If you selected "Post without previewing", all the imported works will immediately be posted to the Archive, and you will be taken either to the work page (if you imported a single work), or to a list of the imported works (if you imported multiple works).

If you're having trouble importing, you can check the Known Issues page for importing, or you can contact Support.

What websites can I import from?

There is no hard and fast list of websites that works can be imported from. If you're not sure whether you can import from a particular site, the best thing to do is try! Generally, the Archive importer will access the URL as a guest user and attempt to interpret the site's HTML in a reasonable way. The importer cannot access pages that are password-protected or friends-locked. It may have trouble accessing content that requires age verification, and it cannot access dynamic URLs (URLs containing question marks). Various other factors may also keep the importer from working, so for the moment, trial and error is the best approach.

If you're having trouble importing, you can check the Known Issues page for importing, or you can contact Support.

How do I import a multi-chaptered work?

If the work you are importing has a separate URL for each chapter, you can import all the chapter URLs together as a chaptered work. To do this, find the "Post" menu beside the "Hi, [user name]!" greeting at the top of the page (in the default skin), and select "Import Work". This will take you to the Import New Work page.

  1. In the URLs field, enter the URL of each chapter in order, one on each line.
  2. Under "Import as", select "Chapters in a single work".
  3. Fill out the rest of the fields as described in How do I import works from another website?
  4. Select the "Import" button. This will take you to a preview page for the imported work.

If you're having trouble importing, you can check the Known Issues page for importing, or you can contact Support.

How do I import multiple works at one time?

You can import separate works from up to 25 URLs at one time. To do this, find the "Post" menu beside the "Hi, [user name]!" greeting at the top of the page (in the default skin), and select "Import Work". This will take you to the Import New Work page.

  1. In the URLs field, enter the URL of each work in order, one on each line.
  2. Under "Import as", select "Works".
  3. If you are importing a large number of works, you may want to select "Post without previewing" (under Preferences). Otherwise, a draft will be created for each work, and you will need to post each draft individually, as described below.
  4. Fill out the rest of the fields as described in How do I import works from another website?
  5. Select the "Import" button.
    • If you have selected "Post without previewing", this will immediately post the works to the Archive.
    • If you did not select "Post without previewing", you will be a given a list of the imported works, which are now saved as drafts. When you follow each link, you will be taken to the Preview page for each imported work. You will need to preview and post each work individually. These drafts are also saved in your ordinary list of drafts. You can access them as described in How do I edit or post a draft I've saved?

If you want to make changes to multiple works at once, go to How do I edit multiple works at the same time?

If you're having trouble importing, you can check the Known Issues page for importing, or you can contact Support.

What sites can I use for hosting multimedia files?

Images used in Archive posts can be hosted on any image hosting site. Refer to How do I post an image?

For other types of multimedia files, your hosting options depend on how you want to post the work. It's fine to create a post that only contains a link to another site where a work is hosted. This is often done for podfics, in particular. If you decide to go this route, you can host your file anywhere.

On the other hand, if you want your file to play inside an Archive post, you will need to embed a video or audio player in your post. For video and playlists, this means that you will need to host your file on a site whose player has been approved for use on Archive of Our Own. For audio, you can host the file anywhere and use Dewplayer, the Archive's local MP3 player.

The following sites' players have been approved:

Video:

  • archive.org
  • youtube.com
  • vimeo.com
  • ning.com
  • dailymotion.com
  • viddertube.com
  • metacafe.com
  • vidders.net
  • criticalcommons.org

Playlists:

  • spotify.com
  • 8tracks.com

Audio:

  • podfic.com
  • soundcloud.com
  • You can also host your file on the site of your choice and use the Archive's locally hosted player.

If you want to use a site that is not on this list, you can contact Support and ask to have it added.

More instructions can be found in these FAQs:

How do I post an image?

To embed an image in a post, use one of the following methods:

  • In the HTML editor, enter the following code, replacing IMAGE_URL with your image URL, and replacing IMAGE_DESCRIPTION with a short description of the image:
    <img src="IMAGE_URL" alt="IMAGE_DESCRIPTION" />
    The image description is optional, but is helpful to include for visually impaired users. The image URL needs to be a complete URL, including the file extension.
  • Image hosting websites usually provide you with embed code which you can use to post your image. Find the "share" or "embed" option on the hosting site, then copy and paste the embed code into the HTML editor. Hosting sites typically include some extra code in this option, such as a link back to their site.
  • In the Rich Text editor, select the "Insert/edit image" icon from the toolbar. This will bring up a dialogue window. In the "Source" field, enter the full image URL. You may then enter an image description. If you wish, you can also edit the image dimensions, which are auto-filled when you enter the image URL. If the "Constrain proportions" box is checked, it means that the image height and width will be kept proportional, so that the image size can be changed without distorting it.

If you're posting fanart, consider using the Fanart tag to make your work easier to find.

For help with the different editors, go to What is the HTML editor? and What is the Rich Text editor?

How do I post a video?

First make sure that your video is hosted on one of the whitelisted hosting sites. Most video hosting websites provide embed code that you can copy and paste into the Archive's HTML editor. You can usually find this code under a "share" or "embed" link on the video page.

You can also enter the embed code yourself, using the <iframe> tag as shown below, replacing "VIDEO_URL" with the actual URL:

<iframe src="VIDEO_URL"></iframe>

Please note: Videos may not be displayed properly in Preview mode. You may need to post the work before the video will show up.

If you're posting a fanvid, consider using the Fanvids tag to make your work easier to find.

For more information about the HTML editor, go to What is the HTML editor?

How do I post an audio file?

You will need to host the file in MP3 format on an external site. Once you have the file URL, you can use Dewplayer, the Archive's locally hosted player, to embed the file in the HTML editor.

You have a few different options for how the player will be configured, with slightly different code for each. You will need to replace the "MP3_FILE_URL" in the example code with the actual URL of the file.

Classic:

the Dewplayer Classic skin
<embed type="application/x-shockwave-flash" flashvars="mp3=MP3_FILE_URL" src="https://archiveofourown.org/system/dewplayer/dewplayer.swf" width="200" height="27" allowscriptaccess="never" allownetworking="internal"></embed>

Classic with Volume control:

the Dewplayer Classic skin with volume control
<embed type="application/x-shockwave-flash" flashvars="mp3=MP3_FILE_URL" src="https://archiveofourown.org/system/dewplayer/dewplayer-vol.swf" width="250" height="27" allowscriptaccess="never" allownetworking="internal"></embed>

Bubble:

the Dewplayer Bubble skin
<embed type="application/x-shockwave-flash" flashvars="mp3=MP3_FILE_URL" src="https://archiveofourown.org/system/dewplayer/dewplayer-bubble.swf" width="250" height="65" allowscriptaccess="never" allownetworking="internal"></embed>

Bubble with Volume control:

the Dewplayer Bubble skin with volume control
<embed type="application/x-shockwave-flash" flashvars="mp3=MP3_FILE_URL" src="https://archiveofourown.org/system/dewplayer/dewplayer-bubble-vol.swf" width="250" height="65" allowscriptaccess="never" allownetworking="internal"></embed>

Soundcloud.com's player is also whitelisted for embedding in Archive posts. If your file is posted on Soundcloud, find the "Share" link, select "Embed", and copy the embed code into the HTML editor.

For more information about the HTML editor, go to What is the HTML editor?

How do I post a podfic?

If you want to embed your podfic so that it streams within a post on the Archive, follow the instructions in How do I post an audio file? You can also post a link to the site where the podfic is hosted, or even post a link to download the file directly. There are some websites dedicated specifically to hosting podfics, which should show up in an internet search.

When posting a podfic, you will probably want to duplicate the tags and other information from the original work. You can also add the Podfic tag, so that users searching for podfics can easily find your work. To credit the original work, select "This work is a remix, a translation, a podfic, or was inspired by another work" on the Post New Work page, and fill out the requested information. This will create a link to the original work, and will also create a link to your podfic from the original work if the creator accepts it.

How do I post a playlist?

You can embed playlists from Spotify and 8tracks.com. Find the "share" or "embed" option on your playlist, then copy the embed code into the Archive's HTML editor. You can apply the Playlist tag to make your playlist easier to find.

For more information about the HTML editor, go to What is the HTML editor?

Where can I get more information if my question isn't answered here?

Some frequently asked questions about the Archive are answered in the broader Archive FAQ. Questions and answers about our Terms of Service can be found in the Terms of Service FAQ. You may also like to check out our Known Issues. If you need more help, please contact Support.