The Five-Point Guide to Writing Clear & Practical Posts

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The Five-Point Guide to Writing Clear & Practical Posts

Post by Nic on Sat Apr 04, 2009 11:37 pm

Many people visiting a forum for the first time don't know how best to elicit the information they're after in their requests, and this can be daunting for some - if not most. So, to help you out, we've come up with:

The Five-Point Guide to Writing Clear & Practical Posts


  1. Look through the different category names to see which best suits your query. If you put it in the wrong place by accident - don't worry, one of the moderators can move it for you if you message them or just wait for one of them to spot it (there's usually one of us malingering somewhere). If you have more than one query, please start a new thread for each one - it becomes very difficult following the member comments when there are multiple items requiring identification.
  2. Start with a title. If you have an idea of who made the item you're asking about, then use it in the title to get peoples' attention. If you have no idea about the item's origins, then be descriptive. 'Clear glass vase with blue swirls' will get a better response than writing simply 'glass vase'.
  3. Clear photographic images. Most often these are essential in getting a meaningful reply. These are best taken against a neutral background with no distractions - against a large piece of card works best, but a plain bedsheet will do in a pinch. If your query is for pottery, then a shot of the base is always helpful even if there are no marks. The same applies for glass, as well as a shot of the rim. Knowing how a piece is finished sometimes gives big clues as to who made it, or when. If you need assistance in adding a photograph, please ask a moderator - we're always happy to help.
  4. Now the really important part - details, details, details! In your text you should describe your item fully - its dimensions, its type of finish, any unusual characteristics, its approximate weight if you feel that's significant, and anything else you can think of. Even if you think that you may have already shown these in your photographs it's helpful to reiterate and clarify it in writing.
  5. The waiting game - and here patience is a virtue. Sometimes it takes a little time to get a definitive ID as not all members visit on a daily basis - so please don't lose heart if you don't receive an immediate reply. Your post will be bumped up for a fresh look after a week or two if necessary. Please also feel free to bump up your own threads from time to time if you wish.
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Nic
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