I am not a fic!
Monday, September 11, 2006

Fic formatting examples to go with the fic formatting thread


The following is in a thread, but the thread doesn't interpret things like the fic postings. So, here it is the way it should look:

This thread is in the interest of doing cool formatting things in fics... the kind of cool things that require *gasp* html knowledge, eek! I'll try to keep everything listed in this first post, so you can check back in here for all the goodies.

(As of 3/18/10, some of the formatting isn't working. Likely from changes after evil spammers attacked the site. I'll leave them in, in the hopes that the functionality comes back someday.)

For the how-to, go to the thread and click "reply with quote"

If you don't get it, I'm happy to send examples over email. PM me or write to


Here's how you do italics, bold, and underline.

Chinese mouseovers:

To show the meaning of Chinese without annoying brackets or whatever, do this:

gé zhi wō

Put your mouse over it to see the meaning - I think there's one kind of browser it doesn't work for, I'm not sure...

Sometimes, there's been problems with longer phrases. I find copy and paste always works better then typing something in, so here's a long one you can copy and replace with your own phrases and meanings:

bù zhī tiān gāo dì hòu

You can combine these with other formats, like italics:

bù zhī tiān gāo dì hòu

Or put them in idented paragraphs, which I'll just leave as homework.

BTW, if you want to put in the inflections - that is, all the weird marks over the characters - I have a theory for what works. Might take time to explain, so just I'll add it if there's interest.

Right-justified and centered paragraphs:

This text is left-justified.

This text is right-justified.

This text is centered.

And this paragraph is back to the left.

Indented Paragraphs

This one is tricky the way I do it. (There must be an easier way, but I haven't figured it out. Help??)

First, you need to know how paragraphs end:

FFF automatically formats paragraphs in fics by adding an empty line and indenting the next paragraph. This happens where you have a carriage-return in your typing. It you use a p inside < and > brackets with NO CARRIAGE RETURN, (so two lines appear to run together before you post them) you will get the empty line and no indent. If you use a br inside < and > brackets, you get a simple new line - no blank line, no indent. Example:

Line 1 has a typed carriage return at its end Line 2 has a p in brackets and no carriage return, which will make the next line not indent.

Line 3 has a br in brackets and no carriage return, which means no empty line to follow and no indent.
Line 4 is just like Line 3.
Line 5 ends with a carriage return.

And all text after is back to the usual thing.

To make deeply indented single spaced paragraphs, you need to insert spaces at the beginning of lines 3 through 5 above. To make spaces that won't be ignored, use & nbsp but without the space between the & and the nbsp.

You'll just have to believe me about the nbsp guy, because when you click "reply-with-quote", all you see are the spaces. Really. I typed in the & nbsp things - ten of them, right next to eachother, with no spaces, just at the beginning of lines 3 through 5. But it does works, see:

Line 1 Line 2

          Line 3
          Line 4
          Line 5

And now we're back to normal text again.

Sorry this is so textbook-ish. I don't know how else to show how to do it! And there has to be an easier way. Anyone???

*********Added Jan 24:

An easier but less precise way of having indented text is to use the blockquote command. This doesn't automatically bring in the right margin, but I'm sure there are ways of doing that if you really want to. Here we go with a blockquote:

It’ll indent the quote lines and change the font. You can select the font that it will use by changing the FONT FACE setting, which I did to make this ARIAL.

This is useful for verse (not “uni”verse – songs or poems) or, say, someone writing a letter. That kind of thing.

Links to other pages

Link to another webpage with the following, but replace { with < and } with > and the web address with what ever you want. (I put in the address of the thread that goes with this.)

This is a link to {A HREF=""}this thread{/A}.

What this looks like when done right:

This is a link to this thread.


*******Added on Jan 24

Here's a way of using a table to line up the Chinese definitions - FFF seems to want to make the font too big, but this fixes that:

dŏng ma: understand?
fā fēng: go crazy
nán dù: trouble; problem

Other useful things??

Use hr in the pointy brackets <> to get a horizontal rule to separate sections.

And you can make it colored (weee!):

That is the end of my knowledge. Please share on the thread if you know cool stuff, or ask if there's something in particular you'd like to do and maybe someone will know.



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Back Stories Book 3, Chapter 25
Zoë nodded. “I’ll bet there’s a little committee of suits back there trying to figure out how best to lie.”&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp

“Or how to tell some horrible truth,” Inara replied softly.&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp&nbsp

“Or how to make the most effective use of medical waste incendiaries to get rid of our bodies,” Wash chimed in.

Back Stories III, Chapter 24
Mal returns to a few familiar places.

Back Stories III: Chapter 23
The BDH’s find themselves enmeshed in too damned many OCs. But hey, they’re necessary. Plottiness and all.

Back Stories III, Chapter 22
Inara tells the story of why she left the Core. Well, half of it anyway.

Back Stories III, Chapter 21
The battle with the Reavers continues, and Mal makes a choice. All decisions have consequences.

Back Stories III, Chapter 20
Finally a little Mal POV, but it doesn't last long.

Back Stories III, Chapter 19
The trials and tribulations of an older, wiser River Tam.

Back Stories Book III, Chapter 18
The aftermath of an unexpected encounter. Except—not all of the crew are accounted for…

Back Stories Book III, Chapter 17
A lovely day in the mountains: friendly locals and fresh air under a clear blue sky. What could possibly go wrong?

Back Stories Book III, Chapter 16.
Zoë tells of her soiree with terrorists on Oeneus.