Town of Danby, NY: Document: DAN_SUBMISSIONS
Document Date: 20100714
Danby Area News Submission Guidelines, 14-Jul-2010

Background

The Danby Area News (Danby News or DAN) is published monthly by the Danby Community Council. Submissions, on topics of interest to Danby residents, are solicited from Danby residents and others. This document provides guidelines for article/item submitters: how to prepare a submission, and how to submit it.

How To Submit An Article/Item To The Danby Area News

In general, Email is the best way to send something to the Danby Area News. Also, in general, it should be sent as Plain Text, not as an attachment. Attachments should only be used for photos and other non-text submissions.
  1. Please, please, please, no Word documents and no attachments. Send your items as Plain Text; that is, type it (or "paste" it as if you had typed it) into the body of a Email message.
  2. Save time and storage space: please don't send anything that's not part of your submission.
  3. Photos, if any, should be sent in separate Email messages; that is, separate from your article/item text. Be sure to include a description of the photo: what's happening, who's visible (names!), and the photographer's name.
  4. Space is limited; please try to keep your item under one column in length. That is, only the text that'll fit in one column width by no more than 8" high. About 250-350 words. Shorter the better. If you need an example, look at previous issues in the Danby Area News section of the Town of Danby web site.

Preparing a Submission for the Danby Area News

  1. Please don't even try to make it "look" right. Don't worry about things like all caps for titles, etc etc. It's actually easier when we don't have to replace your formatting with what really works (smile). Just write your text naturally... we'll edit for space, spelling, clarity, and a consistent style.
  2. Telephone numbers always have Area Codes. These days, more and more people are using cell phones instead of landlines. All too often, those cell phones are assigned numbers in a different area code. So, please be specific; give a 10-digit number when you specify a North American telephone number.
  3. Dates are Cardinal, not Ordinal. In plain language, that means you should say "August 1" rather than "August 1st", unless you are explicitly saying, "The First Day of August." Nobody talks that way, so please just say, "August 1."
  4. Speaking of dates, there are a few standard formats for describing the "where and when" of an event.
    In general (note the bold prepositions):
    ...on Thursday, August 1, 2010 at 7pm in the Danby Town Hall.
    • ON: Specify the day-of-week, month, day, and year.
    • AT: "At" always refers to a time of day. If, however, a time range is being given, use, "...August 1, 2010, 7-9pm, in...," with no preposition at all.
    • IN: Events happen "in" a location, not "at" a location. This avoids repetitive use of the word, "at". There are some rare exceptions; for example, "...5pm, on the third step in front of Town Hall," or, "...5pm, at the yellow mark near Town Hall."
  5. Avoid superfluous number digits. For example, "7pm", not "7:00pm"; "$5", not "$5.00".
  6. Numbers less than or equal to twenty are usually spelled out; numbers greater than twenty use numeric digits. Example: one, two, three, eighteen, nineteen, twenty, versus 21 and 22. However, when numbers are presented in comparison to each other, use digits always. Example: 12 red apples and 7 yellow bananas.

Timing and Tense

Please bear in mind that the people who read your submission, will not be reading it until several weeks after you write it. This has some obvious, but often forgotten, consequences:

  1. Events that you view as being in the distant future, won't be as distant to the reader. An encouragement to "plan ahead" may fool the reader into thinking the event is weeks, not days, ahead.
  2. Several weeks worth of events that you view as being in the future, will be past history for the reader. It will be confusing if you refer to these in the future tense, e.g., "At an upcoming meeting...."
  3. Your immediate past will be long-forgotten history to the reader. If you are reporting on an event that happened "last month", it may well be "two months ago—ancient history" to the reader.
It is good practice to write as if you shared the reader's sense of date and time.