How to write an article for Smogon's Flying Press (with shelved available article ideas)

antemortem

burn my tomorrows
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Community Admin
#1
Contributing Articles to TFP
The Article Workshop is always looking for talented new writers and artists, and we'd love to have any aspiring contributors who are willing to learn and would like to offer their time and creativity. Read this post thoroughly and take heed that you can always contact any staff member with concerns if you need further guidance. Trolling, irrelevant threads, or posts that otherwise violate the following instructions will be deleted and/or infracted, so please take this seriously.

Idea Guidelines
If you're not sure what makes a great article idea, here are some important principles, adapted from the old Submission Guidelines. Remember that you can check out the archival Article Index to get a feel for what kind of content we've approved in the past! More experienced contributors may skip this section.
  • Audience — The Article Workshop accepts all kinds of ideas relevant to the Smogon community. This includes but is not necessarily limited to competitive Pokémon (strategies, informational articles, playstyles, and so on), Pokémon-related entertainment (appropriate humour articles, flavour discussions, and so on) community happenings (projects, events going on in various areas of the community, and so on), and anything else you can think of that might be relevant to Smogon as a community and/or a competitive Pokémon authority. Conversely, if your article doesn't fit in with the primary interests of the publication, take it elsewhere.
  • Authority — 'Write what you know.' If you're an expert on a particular playstyle, strategy, or metagame, we'd love to learn more about it. If you have a keen sense of humour and quirkiness, lend your wit to an entertainment piece about the community or Pokémon itself. If you're a seasoned veteran, take us for a trip down Memory Lane. Whatever you feel you have insight in, let us know! We particularly value passionate, enthusiastic writers who are truly dedicated to the subjects of their articles. Conversely, if you don't know much about what you're writing about or don't care, don't try to write it.
  • Creativity — What keeps the Article Workshop fresh is people coming to us wanting to write with new ideas. New article concepts and discussions of emergent ideas / strategies are particularly well-received, so use your imagination and apply your unique perspectives! The project still aims to capture people's interest by continually coming out with interesting, refreshingly new and different ideas. Of course, if you can find a concept that hasn't been examined too recently in the archives and would like to put your own spin on it, you can apply to continue or revamp it. Conversely, if your article concept is too similar to something that's been recently published, it will most likely be declined.
Contributor Guidelines
Aspiring contributors should read this to get an understanding of what qualities we're looking for in our workers. Welcoming and encouraging new contributors is very important to us and we'll do our best to help you with anything you don't understand, so don't worry!
  • This may come as a surprise, but we're not too picky about the kind of writer you are! We take quality over quantity very seriously, but if English isn't your first language or your prose is substandard, we can take care of that. We have a very talented grammar prose team who can work with you to fix your writing, and you can always enlist a coauthor for assistance. In fact, we advocate for coauthoring as much as possible because, while we have a very capable Quality Control team, being able to cross examine one's work with a partner writing on the same subject can be very handy. Just try your hardest to be concise, clear, and lively, and the rest will come. What matters: effort and a desire to improve.
  • Cooperation and teamwork is how we keep the Article Workshop running, so you need to be able to get along with us. Take constructive criticism graciously, consider our recommendations and suggestions, treat your fellow workers (QC team, GP team, HTML team, artists, Smog Staff) with respect and gratitude for their help, and be friendly. One of the best parts of being involved with the Article Workshop is the spirit of friendship and pride infused in our community-created finished product.
  • You must be responsible. Procrastination creates a burden on everyone else involved in the process, so you need to be able to commit to finishing your article a decent amount of time before the release. Emergencies do arise, so if for an unforeseen reason (such as health or technical issues) you can't complete your article, let the staff know immediately. Articles in the release queue are very likely to be replaced if an author cannot complete their work in the designated amount of time, and if their topical content time-sensitive, we will be forced to consider dropping the incomplete article entirely due to irrelevancy.
Article Approval Guidelines
If your idea is ready to go, please make a thread with the requisite information and await our comments.
  • All we look for is a solid outline with a brief but well-explained summary of your idea, what it relates to, and the kind of content you plan to write. This allows us to assess how well-versed you are in the topic in question and for us to identify any unnecessary writing on your part in the event you have excess motives, or if your article is rejected. In areas such as battling strategy and metagame analysis, this type of quality control becomes very important, as those aspiring to publish such articles in these categories should have a thorough understanding of the concepts they want to write about. Our Quality Control team will, later one, address very specific details, but a solid background for writing must be apparent. Additionally, give your thread an informative title, such as a prospective article name or a very short description.
  • Please only post with ideas for articles you intend to write yourself. Do not post volunteering to write if someone gives you an idea, or with an idea you'd like someone else to write. If you have one or two coauthors you plan to write with, list their names as well. Please note only you and the approval team will be able to see your thread; likewise, you will not be able to see anyone else's.
  • Writing is a serious responsibility, and if your content is time-sensitive, your deadline will be strict. In light of this, do not post if you can't commit to finishing your article in a timely fashion (we'd like to see most non-time-sensitive articles completed within a week, two at the very latest) and seeing every aspect of the publishing process to completion, including implementing QC and GP checks.
  • Spotlight articles are available for application if you are deemed to have the appropriate metagame knowledge.
  • Wait patiently for your idea to be examined. Our team will evaluate your idea with their expertise in the subjects concerned, but we may have to discuss potential issues among ourselves or request clarification from you (so check back regularly!). We invite all Senior Staff members (super moderators and administrators) to comment on applications concerning their areas of specialty, so take their comments seriously. Additionally, your idea may be promising but require some tweaks and suggestions in order to be approved, so be prepared to accept those. We will be as prompt as possible and let you know what we think!
  • If we reject you, don't be discouraged! Almost all rejections will be on grounds of the idea being unsuitable, so if you're still interested, come up with a new idea. Don't try to find ideas for the sake of it, but wait until you have a well-thought-out idea and then feel free to reapply.
  • If you are approved to write and only once you are approved to write, a super moderator or administrator will grant you access to the workshop.
 
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antemortem

burn my tomorrows
is a member of the Site Staffis a Community Contributoris an Administratoris a Battle Server Admin Alumnusis a Smogon Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Live Chat Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
Community Admin
#2
The Flying Press has always been aiming to cover a wide range of subjects, and we hope that this thread will be able to help with that by guiding potential writers towards some interesting article ideas.

Below is a list of shelved articles, commonly used article formats and just potentially useful article ideas in general that we thought might help those who would like to write something for us, but just aren't sure where to start.

Once you feel like you've chosen a good topic you're knowledgeable about, you can go ahead and post in the Article Approvals subforum. We obviously approve of the idea you'll be posting since it's on this list already, so what we'd like to see from your thread is a short sample of your writing so we can get a better idea about how you understand the article and confirm that you're capable of working on it.

We'll update this list on a semi-regular basis, so make sure to check in from time to time.

General Competitive
"Pokemon Spotlight"
Analyze the Pokémon and its current place in its relevant tier. Here's an example.

"Playstyle Analysis"
Analyze a playstyle and its current place in its relevant tier. Here's an example.

"Featured RMT"
Pick a RMT and explain its cons and pros. Here's an example.

"Type Analysis"
Analyze a certain type through the years. Here's an example.

"What if Fairy-types never existed"

"Complex EV spreads (in VGC / LC / other relevant metagames)"
Introduction on how to craft EV spreads for certain metagames.

"Smogon Snake Draft coverage"
Tournament coverage, metagame development analyses, literally whatever comes to mind.

Cross-Generational or Previous Generations

"Boxing them out: A guide to Breloom in DPP OU"
Analyze Breelom's place in DPP OU.

"The Legacy of Baton Pass in OU"
Talk about the history of Baton Pass in OU, across the generations.

"Insert Pokemon Here Throughout the Ages"
Talk about how a Pokemon has changed competitively throughout the years and whether it is better or worse off now.

"Starters Through the Ages"
An updated version of this article as well as the Fire and Water instalments.


Ubers

"Ubers Spotlight: Ho-Oh"
Analyze Ho-Oh's influence in the metagame through SM and USM as well as its multitude of sets.

"Fallen Legends"
Analyze Pokemon from ADV, DPP, BW, and ORAS that were very prominent but are currently at low places in VR

"Lower-tier Threats in Ubers"
List and analyze lower tier Pokemon that are prevalent, not just viable in Ubers

"Specialized Strategies in Ubers"
Sticky Web / Trick Room / Sand / Electric Terrain / Psychic Terrain (potentially mergeable with others)

"Flying-types in Ubers"


OverUsed

"OU Spotlight: Tornadus-T"


UnderUsed

"Effects of Gliscor's rise on the metagame"

"Hyper Offense in UU"

"Bulky Offense in UU"

"UU Spotlight: Kommo-o"


RarelyUsed



PU

"Rock-types in PU"


Little Cup

"Poison-types in LC"


Monotype

"Monotype Spotlight: Tapu Koko"


Doubles OverUsed

"Effective Cores"

"Singles Strategies That Don't Adapt Well to Doubles"

Battle Spot

"Stall in Battle Spot Singles"
Analyze this specific playstyle in Battle Spot Singles.


Other Metagames

"Ability guide for AA"

"Introduction to permanent ladder metagames"
A beginner's guide to a given permanent ladder metagame (currently taken: AAA)


Create-A-Pokemon



General Interest - Spinoffs or Forums

Entertainment

"Pokemon Biology"

"Festival Plaza: Top 5 Ways to Improve It"

"Ultra Beasts: The Concept"

"How to Become the Best Trainer Ever"

"Lillie and What her Future Holds"

"Bottle Caps: Things I'd Rather Collect in Pokemon Than Rusty Old Bottle Caps"

"The Ugliest Shiny Pokémon"

Pokemon Showdown

"Hindi Room Spotlight"
Introduction to the newly public Hindi room, preference for the writer to be a room staff member

"Room Article"
Introduce us to the PS! room that you picked!

"Room Spotlight Series"
Talk about a room of your choice from an outsiders perspective after spending a certain amount of your time in it as well as sharing some of your experiences and impressions.

"PS! bots"


Site Philosophy Articles
 
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ant

byakugan!
is a member of the Site Staffis a Super Moderatoris a Battle Server Admin Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
Super Moderator
#4
History of Pokémon Battle simulators
About Videogames Room
About Traditional Games Room
About MMO Room
About CAP Room
About Trivia Room
About Game Corner Room

About Language Rooms
A Guide to The Studio Room
About PU Room
About Social Media Room
About Smogon Doubles Room

were added to the list
 
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ant

byakugan!
is a member of the Site Staffis a Super Moderatoris a Battle Server Admin Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
Super Moderator
#9
A Cross Generation Retrospective Analysis on Priority was added to the list
 
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ant

byakugan!
is a member of the Site Staffis a Super Moderatoris a Battle Server Admin Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnus
Super Moderator
#10
Gengar Through the Ages
Boxing them out: A guide to Breloom in DPP OU
Doubles Spotlight: Aegislash
The Legacy of Baton Pass in OU
were recently added to the list
 
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skylight

a sky full of lighters ☆
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Server Moderator Alumnus
#11
Hey everyone! Now we know the starters, the cover legendaries, the region and some of the characters we can properly start covering Pokemon Sun and Moon. This is a friendly reminder that if you have an article idea related to any interesting theories, thoughts or anything else, please remember to post them in Article Approvals! On a side note if you're interested in analysing the designs of the new Alola Pokemon (as they come out) send me, skylight, a PM titled 'JAPE'. Thanks!
 
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Jellicent

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RoA Co-Leader
#13
Just a head's up that we won't be approving ORAS spotlight articles until our backlog clears out. There are quite a few in the works at the moment and a new generation approaching shortly. We have to be a bit more selective with ORAS articles in general for similar reasons, so some articles that would normally be approved might be denied. Sorry in advance if that happens; it's just a timing thing~

That said, this is a good time to start thinking of potential SM articles. We'll definitely be looking for cool ideas to publish when the gen kicks off, though we'll probably hold off on approving most of those until it actually launches.
 

The Dutch Plumberjack

ace of wands
is a member of the Site Staffis a Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Top Contributoris a Smogon Media Contributoris an Administrator
Articles Co-Leader
#14
We've made a big update to the list of article ideas--if you've wanted to write articles for us but never had an idea what to write about, then feel free to pick an idea that you're comfortable with and post an outline of how you'd go with it in Article Approvals. We'll be aiming to update this more regularly from here on, so remember to click the "Watch Thread" button!
 

The Dutch Plumberjack

ace of wands
is a member of the Site Staffis a Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Top Contributoris a Smogon Media Contributoris an Administrator
Articles Co-Leader
#15
"Starters Through the Ages"
An updated version of this article as well as the Fire and Water instalments.

"OU Spotlight: Hawlucha"

"OU Spotlight: Kartana"

"Stall in UU"

"Offense in UU"

"The Ugliest Shiny Pokémon"
were added to the list, a bunch of completed / outdated ideas were removed, more new ideas potentially to follow later!
 

The Dutch Plumberjack

ace of wands
is a member of the Site Staffis a Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Top Contributoris a Smogon Media Contributoris an Administrator
Articles Co-Leader
#16
"Playstyle Analysis"
Analyze a playstyle and its current place in its relevant tier. Here's an example.

"What if Fairy-types never existed"

"Complex EV spreads (in VGC / LC / other relevant metagames)"
Introduction on how to craft EV spreads for certain metagames.

"Smogon Snake Draft coverage"
Tournament coverage, metagame development analyses, literally whatever comes to mind.


//Ubers
"Ubers Spotlight: Ho-Oh"
Analyze Ho-Oh's influence in the metagame through SM and USM as well as its multitude of sets.

"Fallen Legends"
Analyze Pokemon from ADV, DPP, BW, and ORAS that were very prominent but are currently at low places in VR

"Lower-tier Threats in Ubers"
List and analyze lower tier Pokemon that are prevalent, not just viable in Ubers

"Specialized Strategies in Ubers"
Sticky Web / Trick Room / Sand / Electric Terrain / Psychic Terrain (potentially mergeable with others)

"Flying-types in Ubers"


//OU
"OU Spotlight: Tornadus-T"


//UU
"Effects of Gliscor's rise on the UU metagame"

"Hyper Offense in UU"

"Bulky Offense in UU"

"UU Spotlight: Kommo-o"


//PU
"Rock-types in PU"


//LC
"Poison-types in LC"


//Monotype
"Monotype Spotlight: Tapu Koko"


//OMs
"Introduction to permanent ladder metagames"
A beginner's guide to a given permanent ladder metagame (currently taken: AAA)
were added to the list of article ideas! If you're interested in writing any of these post a quick outline in Article Approvals when you can.
 

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