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Welcome to your first article/discussion! Fun Man Andy’s Guide to writing on the Community

LIFE ONLINE 🕸💻

Greetings fellow Atlassian Nerds! FMA here! A.k.a. Fun Man Andy. When I’m not busy;

  • pulling my hair out at work as a Project Manager in the highly demanding realm of Augmented Reality,
  • or shouting at my co-workers as the Atlassian Admin,
  • or being climbed on by my kids at the weekend,
  • or busy trying to run the ACE Rotterdam as best as possible (check out our ACE page HERE and the Online Group HERE!),

then I can be found HERE on Community… having FUN! And I LOVE it!

When there is not a Summit or Open taking place, if there’s no AUG / ACE to be found, and you still wanna have some epic Atlassian fun, then look no further than the COMMUNITY!

This is the number one place for asking questions, posting topics, generating discussions and sharing/gaining knowledge on everything ATLASSIAN! Why not the regular Atlassian Confluence and Support pages, you may ask? Because here is where all the NERDY USERS are hanging out (mostly 😉… some Atlassian Team lurk here too!).

 

THIS ARTICLE ✍📝

This article is probably of use to you if you are:

  • new around here and you would love to get super-going on posting in community then this is the article for you to read first, or;
  • have been around a while and know the ropes maybe you’ll get some fresh inspiration for your pieces, or;
  • considered “part of the furniture”, been around forever and whose articles and posts I both admire and am in awe of – Jack, John, Jodi, Teodora, Rachel, Meg, Kat, Thomas, CCM… OMGoodness… too many to list! - then only the bonus point is relevant. (No school like the old school... just gotta spice it up a bit like us Young Whippersnappers do 😉, right Fabienne??)

 

FMA’s 7 POINT GUIDE TO:

FUN WRITING ON THE COMMUNITY

1) Know your TARGET AUDIENCE… 🙈🙉🙊🎯

Nothing worse than posting a question about Confluence as a discussion in the Team Playbook interests section. All that you’ll get is 100 nerds telling you where and how to post your item correctly. If you’re lucky you might even have Nic thinking you’re his Sexy Spam Bot and he’ll report you to The Mods!

But it’s more than just ^right category+right section^ when it comes to Community! Make sure your piece is really interesting for those who you want to read it.

I.e. if it’s about DevOps, make sure DevOps nerds will enjoy it. If it’s a JQL training piece for n00bs, don’t go overboard with the jargon and do explain where necessary. For me one of the BEST articles in the entire collection is this JSD piece by Jack Brickey. I used it when first getting to grips with Jira Service Desk and it was perfect.

[For those a little on the jargon already: JSD = Jira Service Desk // JQL = Jira Query Language]

2) Start with a physical MOOD BOARD... 🎨👨‍🎨

I always love to get creative and visual. It helps from the story! I use my CorrectBook, black pen, and highlighters for colour!

3) Write it up in WORD.DOC (or whatever helps) first... 📑🖋 

Nothing worse than trying to edit in the web browser. It’s not exactly easy / viewable and sometimes the 'save draft' function fails. CtrlC+V works fine in most cases.... just got to know Community's formatting by heart!
3.a) I also do this because often I have more than one In Progress and the 'save draft' function doesn't allow that.
3.b) For the formatting issue, my advice is:
i- write it in word, no formatting, ii- copy/paste to community, iii- format it completely, iv- copy/paste back to word.
Word will now keep the Community formatting for future use. MAGIC !

But most important is that you do whatever you feel most comfortable with! To quote a living legend:
"Write in what(ever) lets you do a brain-dump, and organise and format later"

4) : Manage your creativity USING TRELLOHelloTrello.jpg

Erica, Jodi, Brittany, Iain, Devon and more love this one! It is a great way to back log ideas, monitor progress, save my mood board pics per item, continue updating ideas (like epic GIFs I want to use), etc. etc. ! !  It also helps me not get bogged down as a Campaigner. (see this awesome article for explanation!!) I always have a billion ideas and they often get lost in the murkiness of my mind with little result.

5) KISS! 💋 😘 

Meg wrote a great Confluence article about this - for me often the 2nd S also stands for SHORT.  If it's a technical guide / training piece, I'll go the distance; otherwise it's SS... Simple & Short”:
Concise, interesting, to the point & informative, without losing the reader!

6) Links to OTHER RESOURCES…
Whether it’s another Community piece, an Atlassian Support page, or just your favourite food in your local city (like HERE) sometimes you’ll find linking to other resources really helps bring your Community piece to life!! And that means you’ve started doing point 7 well:

7) Get the reader ENGAGED. 👩‍🏫 🤓
If it is NOT off-topic / just for fun, then I really do my darn hardest to reflect everyday Atlassian User life and try to get others talking about it and reflecting on their own life within Atlassian.
Although I am Fun Man Andy and I just want to overload Atlassian’s Database with Emoji’s, GIFs, and videos… I actually do take the serious topics seriously! Case in point: Summit 2019 - A Quiet Retrospective

Bonus) EMOJI's & GIFs ! 🏆🤘 🍄

Yeah, nah, yeah...  if you've seen one of my articles before no explanation necessary. I love it... fair dinkums to me! Totally not a requirement for writing articles… but, hey! They help keep Articles light & fun.

EXAMPLES

One of my many mood boards and my current Trello board for managing my Atlassian Articles. Whoop!

First.jpg

OVER TO YOU

Hopefully you are now SUPER inspired to get writing on Community... so good luck, write well and have FUN! I look forward to reading your amazing pros! Feel free to post your articles here so I can find them super easily!

Typing.gif

15 comments

Fantastic points in here @FUN MAN ANDY ! I couldn't agree more with all of these. I specifically use trrello to organize when I have ideas, and this community has really helped me step up my GIF game!

Another great tip - check out the questions people are asking, and as you spend time in there you might see trends of things people are interested in, like certain features! Always a good place to find inspiration.

Like # people like this
John Funk Community Leader Dec 04, 2019

@FUN MAN ANDY  - Well done! And definitely inspiring.  :-)

Like FUN MAN ANDY likes this
FUN MAN ANDY Community Leader Dec 04, 2019

Glad you liked @Brittany Joiner ! That is a blooming GREAT TIP! You are such a rockstar when it comes to Community 🤘🌟👩‍🎤 

Like SriKumar P likes this
FUN MAN ANDY Community Leader Dec 04, 2019

Thanks @John Funk 🙏😇

Like SriKumar P likes this
Jack Community Leader Dec 04, 2019

Great article! This really pulls together some great data new and old and will certainly benefit many in the Community. 

Congrats on your first article!

Like FUN MAN ANDY likes this
FUN MAN ANDY Community Leader Dec 04, 2019

That is so awesome to hear @Jack ! I really like that my mixing-it-up is really evident. Thanks for the feedback.

Hey!  I only report stuff to mods if I want a second opinion, or it's one of your posts!  ;-)

I also disagree with points 3 and 4.  Because of the way I think and work, not because they are "wrong" - they're not, for a lot of us. 

4 is not right for me because my brain doesn't do articles by listings (so I don't use Trello for authoring.  The reminder to write an article, oh hell yes, but not for writing it).  I write by throwing random thoughts out and then refining and asking others for help when I need it.

3 is wrong for me because "word".  I stopped that well-intended, but really bloody awful thing wasting my time almost a decade ago.  Your 3b point is exactly what made me dump it.  I write first, organise second, format last.  Word wants you to do all the things straight away.  Confluence encourages my style, but is still less-than-ideal at it (especially on the recent Cloud failures, dropping sections for example).  I would prefer "write in what lets you do a brain-dump, and organise and format later".  Confluence (server) is not far off that.  Word can sod off.

Like # people like this
FUN MAN ANDY Community Leader Dec 04, 2019

Hahaha.... if you get my articles blocked by the mods there'll be fisty-cuffs at Summit 😜

This type of response is why you are a living legend Nic! There really are not many like you... and it's totally awesome!

"Write in what lets you do a brain-dump, and organise and format later"
I can see many people preferring this advice. Epic!
I've even gone and edited my piece to reflect that.

"Word can sod off."
We did an amazing Gliffy Workshop at the Rotterdam ACE yesterday to help boost Gliffy use, in particular at my company where we hosted the event... so let's just add in "Visio" to that statement too. 😜

Like # people like this

Genial artículo, Andy, me lo guardo en favoritos!

Like FUN MAN ANDY likes this
Jodi LeBlanc Community Leader Dec 05, 2019

That Mood Board looks divine @FUN MAN ANDY ! I need one of those right away :) Also, going to try out Correct Board too - thanks for sharing this awesome post :)

Like FUN MAN ANDY likes this
Jimmy Seddon Community Leader Dec 05, 2019

Well done @FUN MAN ANDY!  I don't know much about writing and an article like this makes me realize just how much more I need to learn.

Like FUN MAN ANDY likes this

It is great and inspiring to write something helpful for the community. Thanks @FUN MAN ANDY 

Like FUN MAN ANDY likes this
FUN MAN ANDY Community Leader Feb 09, 2020

@Javier Fernandez _Madrid_ : Que chulo! Muchas gracias !


@Jodi LeBlanc : You are most welcome. Correctbook really are totally awesome. Did you get one yet...? I got a spare if you want. Let me know!

@Jimmy Seddon : so great to hear buddy. I always love to share my knowledge and these reactions justify all the work I point into that! Thank you!!!

@Jayesh Wankhade : dito what I said to Jimmy! Thank you SO much!!! 😄

Like # people like this
Jodi LeBlanc Community Leader Feb 09, 2020

Thanks @FUN MAN ANDY I didn't get one yet, so kind of you to offer me your spare one :) You are truly a generous and kind human!

Like FUN MAN ANDY likes this

Good stuff @FUN MAN ANDY . Just starting my path in the Community, and this guide is useful. And fun!

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