We’re so pleased you’ve joined the Selfish Mother fold! With your help we are rapidly becoming the go-to website for inspiring content on motherhood, striking a chord with our readers through first-class, honest words.
Think of Selfish Mother as your platform to share, connect, entertain, rant or get something off your chest. We have a global audience who are supportive, positive and keen to hear what you have to say. Now you belong to our Writer’s Club you can upload posts whenever you fancy it.
THE LOWDOWN ON POSTING:
1) Log In
Click on “Writer Login’ which you’ll find top right of our homepage
Log into Selfish Mother using the username and password you’ve been emailed after joining the Network (if you haven’t joined yet you can do so here). If you joined but your password hasn’t appeared in your inbox, check your spam filter, or drop us a mail Hello@Selfishmother.com or email our Super Editor Anniki at firstname.lastname@example.org
2) Create your profile:
In the left-hand column, click on ‘Profile’ – this is your personal profile page where you can fine tune your details. Check the following:
• ‘Display name publicly’ – this will be your byline so check this is correct. We like it to be first name last name. IE: Scarlet Smith, not just Scarlet
• Website – if you have a website, blog or Twitter handle then add it here. This will appear under your biography on every post and it will be linkable.
• ’Biographical info’ – this is the place to enter your 30-80 word biog, which will appear on all of your posts. Please include: Your full name, followed by what you do or did or if you’re a full time parent, your children’s names and ages, where you live including town and country, and any other interesting details you want to share.
• ‘New password’ – we suggest you change your password to something you’ll remember and make sure you write it down so you don’t forget it!
• ‘Avatar’ – upload a byline photo of your (preferably on your own). We love to see your photos so please take the time to do this.
• Remember to hit the button ‘Save Profile’
3) Create your post
In left hand column go to Posts and click Add New. If you are familiar with Word Press you`ll know what to do, if not then just write or copy and paste your post into the large box. Our ideal word count is between 600-1200 words long. We like short evenly spaced paragraphs, as this ensures the post is digestible and easy to read. Try and even out the spaces between each paragraph as sometimes they will look odd if cut and pasted from another platform
4) Think of a catchy, imaginative, punchy title A title is often everything and so see if you can really encapsulate the point of your post in as few words as possible. Great titles tend to engage readers right away and so they need to work hard for you (more on this later!)
5) Upload image
Choose one image to represent your post. We love black & white, bold colours, words & signage, vintage-look, or arty. Crop your image and make sure it’s at least 800 pixels wide.
Find ‘Featured Image’ in the right hand column and upload your image pressing ‘Insert Featured Image.’
NB: If need be please credit the image name and the photographer, artist or website at the bottom of your post in Italics.
Tick the box for NEW. Your post will appear in the NEW category until it has been live for a month when it will move to FEATURES or LIFESTYLE categories. If it receives over 100 Facebook Likes it will also appear as a ‘Highlighted Post’ on our Homepage. And if it gets hundreds (or thousands) more it will remain as ‘Most Popular’ on our Homepage until something else supersedes it.
Please preview your post, double-check grammar and spellings, ensure your paragraphs are short and evenly spaced, and your picture is cropped correctly. When you are completely HAPPY, click the blue `PUBLISH` button. You’re unable to edit posts once they are live.
8) Time to share…
Now your post is live it’s time to get sharing. The posts that do best are usually shared by the writer on more than one media. Share it on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and also on email. Ask friends to share it too. Nb: If you’re not prepared to share it yourself, then other people won’t be inclined to either. The more a post is shared, the more chance it has of gaining momentum and being read and liked! Sometimes your post might get picked up by another network, such as Mumsnet Blog Network or The Huffington Post. Or, you might land a feature commission from a major newspaper or magazine.
We also share two posts each day on our Facebook page and choose our favourites to showcase!
SHARING IS AN ART FORM… HERE ARE SOME TIPS:
• First off, leave a comment in the Facebook comment and share the post on your Facebook page…
• Also, we recommend a separate Facebook status update a few days later with the article link that asks friends to like / share your post.
• Commenting on replies beneath your post will add engagement. Interact as you would on your own social media
• Tweet your article too if you’ve got a Twitter account
• You can also take a screen grab and share on your IG feed. Use the hashtag #selfishmother and put the link to the article in your bio
• Don’t forget good old-fashion email! Send friends a link to your article and ASK them to comment and share with their friends in turn.
• Also, don’t restrict yourself to just sharing your own posts. Like, comment and share other SM writers’ posts… and they’ll probably do the same in return.
WRITING HINTS & TIPS
• As we’ve already mentioned a good title is half the battle! The better the title the more likelihood your post will be read and shared. Titles work well that instantly resonate with the reader and aren’t too obscure (IE: so if your post is a about breastfeeding, be sure to mention it in the title). Titles work that are catchy, a play on words, a familiar phrase, a double meaning, alliteration, or that sum up the article in a few words and / or taps into the zeitgeist.
• Tone of voice should be chatty (as if talking to a friend), observant, intelligent and – if it suits – witty.
• Say what’s on your mind: be honest. Readers can smell a rat. Honest words are so much more compelling than beating around the bush or disguising your real thoughts.
• At Selfish Mother we love features that are inspiring, life affirming, motivating and feel good. We believe in sharing the love and supporting other women. We are feminist at heart but we are not in any way bitter – we are glass half full, and love life!
• Don’t write way over the word count (Minimum 400 words, maximum 1200 words). more words doesn’t equal a better feature. If you go way over then go back and edit it down by taking out odd words and sentences here and there. It will be far easier for readers to digest.
• Use minimal exclamation marks if you want readers to take you seriously. Limit yourself to one or two a post. Not lots like this!!!! Also check your piece for grammar and spelling before you hit the PUBLISH button. We do edit pieces that we share on Facebook but first impressions count and so don’t rush the detail. You can always come back to a piece later and save it in drafts until it’s ready to go
• We prefer not to link out to other websites as think this breaks the flow of a post.
• We’re not fans of swearing in posts but the odd one here or there is okay.
• We love our kids. We neither go on about them or complain about them. Selfish Mother is also about reclaiming our identity and celebrating our individuality and the things that help us feel more human and connected.
IMAGE HINTS & TIPS
• If a good title is half the battle, a good image is the other half! You have more chance of people reading your post if your image is good. We do edit and change images at times especially if we are going to share them our social media feed
• Sometimes your post may be shared on the image alone. So think hard if your image reflects the post to its best ability.
• The featured image needs to be at least 800 pixels wide in order for the post to be published. If you double click on your image in PREVIEW you can edit the size. Google how to crop images if you’re not sure how to do it.
• We love images that are vintage black and white images, good personal photographs, bright colours, neon signs, retro signage or an image that sums up the post in a clever way. Think laterally… i.e: for an article on breastfeeding you could find a pic of vintage milk bottles.
• Do not use images that are already in the Media Library at Selfish Mother as these images are there because they have already been used. Take them as inspiration!
• We do like images to look stylish. Don’t go for badly-lit, tacky, cheesy or obvious images.
• We at Selfish Mother may change your image if we think we’ve found one better, so don’t be surprised or offended if we swap your picture for another one. We just think it looks better and will be more sharable.
• We don’t pay for images at Selfish Mother, which means some careful picture research needs to go on before posting.
• Feel free to use photos of your own, these can add a lovely personal touch, although keep them stylish and interesting.
• If you want to use someone else’s image please ask for their permission. Once you have permission then you can add a picture credit beneath your article.
• Don’t think it’s okay to use a photo of someone else’s if you simply credit it. You’ll need permission to ‘borrow’ a photo, eg: from someone else’s blog.
• If searching online there are plenty of picture sites that you can sign up to for free or a small fee. You can also do advanced searches on Google for ‘credit free’ images.
TERMS & CONDITIONS
By joining the Network you agree to the following terms & conditions:
+ We reserve the right to edit all posts published at Selfish Mother.
+ A post cannot be edited by the writer once it is live on Selfish Mother.
+ A post cannot be taken down by the writer once it is live on Selfish Mother, but may be removed if it has been agreed between Selfish Mother and the writer.
+ Selfish Mother reserves the right to request changes to submissions when necessary.
+ Selfish Mother reserves the right to take down any posts that are not in keeping with the ethos or mindset of the site.
+ Selfish Mother reserves the right to share all posts submitted by Network Members on social media and via email.
+ Selfish Mother reserves the right to edit and change all Writer biographies
+ Selfish Mother reserves the right to edit or change all uploaded images.
+ Selfish Mother does not pay Writers for submissions
+ Selfish Mother reserves the right to delete comments below any submissions.
+ Selfish Mother is not responsible for the views of any writers who post on Selfish Mother. The views are the writers own.
+ Email at any time to unsubscribe Hello@SelfishMother.com.
+ Network members are not employees of Selfish Mother.
GET IN TOUCH!
We don’t want you to feel that you’re ‘going it alone’ – the whole point of this Network is that you feel part of a gaggle! If you have any questions or problems you can…
Email: email@example.com or email Super Editor Anniki Sommerville at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions that aren’t covered here.