Style Guide

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These guidelines are here to encourage consistency, which should facilitate both the creation and consumption of Ovalkwiki content. Some of these points are obvious. Some are not. Some might be confusing to implement (especially if you've never used the Widgets feature.) But they're all here for a reason.

  • Each of the existing page categories has a corresponding template.
    • Please use the appropriate template when creating a new page.
    • Note that each template provides basic layout, and offers suggestions regarding which content goes where.
    • If a template does not exist (i.e. you are starting a new category), improvise from one similar to your needs.
    • Articles can be edited later when a new template is established for that category. Don't let the absence of a template keep you from writing that article your fingers are just burning to write.
  • Categories are vital
    • Categories are used to group articles in categories, sub-categories, sub-sub-categories, etc. and thereby to automatically fill certain lists of articles.
    • Make sure you add the category or categories of the article. Otherwise the article will not show up in the appropriate lists on category pages and such.
    • Only add a new category if it is likely to be used as a filtering criteria for searches or lists.
  • Schlock Mercenary is a comic strip! Pictures are both available and essential.
    • Wherever possible, please include at least one picture of the subject of the article.
    • For consistency and ease of reading, make sure that the image at the top of the page is a single picture (ie not a full strip) of the subject, and that it is aligned to the right hand margin. Other images may vary according to need.
    • Anyone can do file uploads, but we recognize not everyone is comfortable cropping strips for inclusion, so "deep linking" images on the comic site is perfectly acceptable.
    • If the only image available is only found offline, please contact an Organizer for assistance.
    • If you'd like a high-resolution crop from a strip, post a link to the strip in the discussion page. One of the Organizers can assist here.
      • [NOTE: It might be easier for me if all image requests were kept in one place, allowing me to more quickly respond. Should we create a page devoted to image requests?]
  • The text editor in use here makes it simple to keep the look and feel of the pages consistent.
    • Bold and italic text should be used judiciously. Schlock Mercenary (the strip title) should always be italicized, as should ship names, like Serial Peacemaker, Morokweng, and Post-Dated Check Loan, and book titles, like The Seventy Maxims of Maximally Effective Mercenaries.
  • Links to supporting strips or other canon material should be provided for every canonical point.
    • Links to strips should have the date of the strip in the format YYYY-MM-DD as the visible text and be enclosed in square brackets, like so: 2000-06-12.
  • Links or references to non-strip sources in an article should be listed in the References section at the bottom of the page.
    • Embed footnotes at the appropriate point in the article.
  • Information not located in the Speculation section of an article should be drawn directly from a canonical source.
    • Unless you are Howard. He IS a canonical source.
    • Where possible, a link should be provided to the source at the appropriate point in the article.
    • For sources that cannot be linked, such as bonus stories in the printed versions of the comic, list the source (including full name and page number for books) in the External References section and add a footnote as appropriate.
      • Yes, Howard needs to do this, too. But it's harder to prove.
  • Discussion is important.
    • There may be some disagreements about certain points of canon, or about the wording of certain sections. Discuss them with the other fen here, and remember that Howard is the (obvious) ultimate authority.
    • To help prevent disagreements and to make tracking changes easier, it's a good idea to leave a comment explaining what you've done and why. This is especially helpful for large edits.
    • Always keep the discussion civil. Otherwise we may send Sergeant Schlock after you.

Organizers may add to this page as needs evolve and other issues arise.