Please read all of the below to understand our Quality Standards regarding the site, stories/gaming creepypastas, etc. Failure to do so can result in a deletion to your story.
(Note: these quality standards originally come from Creepypasta Wiki.)
- Before you post your article to this site you MUST have proofread and spell-checked the document. This includes, but is not limited to, the proper use of capitalization, spelling, punctuation, spacing, and paragraphs. Most document editors, like Microsoft Word, have a spelling and a grammar check feature built in. We suggest using that, then copying and pasting into source mode on the site to eliminate any possibility of formatting conflicts. Failing that, there's always SpellCheck.net. You may also use source mode in the wiki editor to spell check. As a sidenote, ALWAYS store a copy of your work locally on your PC or tablet, or on the cloud. It is YOUR responsibility as a writer to take responsibility for your own work. If we delete your story, and you don't have a backup, tough. Backing up your work only takes a few seconds and can save you many headaches and crying sessions in your pillow at night.
- If you upload a pasta that is terribly unedited (spelling, grammar, bad formatting etc) or is a massive wall of text, you acknowledge that it can and in most cases will be deleted as soon as it is uploaded. Pages that are a single, massive block of text (Wall-o-Text) are uninteresting and impossible to read. And all of the terrible spelling and grammar that we see on some submissions make the site look uneducated and childish. In short, they will be deleted. If you have questions with either of these violations, kindly leave a message on one of the administrator's talk pages and one of them will gladly help you out.
- This is not to say you must upload pages without any mistakes or you will be banned. We all make mistakes, and we have more than enough qualified editors (including you!) to help out with minor tweaks. Anyway, this is to cut back on the kinds of pages that are either "Each Word Capitalized", or where the author has some weird aversion to ever using a capital letter and/or spaces after punctuation.
- Pages That Are Written Completely In Title Case (capitalizing the first letter of each word) will also be deleted instantly. There's no sane reason as to why anyone with a brain and even a basic knowledge of language would write like this.
- Pages with a large percentage, to all of the story lacking spaces after punctuation will be deleted instantly.
You must properly capitalize your page titles. See the Style Guide for a refresher course in capitalizing titles.
The long and the short of it is that titles must adhere to the following standards:
- Properly Capitalized.
- Contain no periods. A title is not a sentence. A decorator question mark or bang is fine in many cases, but periods are not. Sometimes ellipses are acceptable in a title too depending on what you are trying to convey.
- Your story should have a consistent plot. It also should have a decent, original plotline formulated with different events.
- CAPS are not scary. DON'T TYPE EVERY WORD LIKE THIS TO REPRESENT EXCITEMENT OR FEAR. That's why this (!) or using italics exist. If you are going to use caps, please keep in mind that they need to be limited.
- There should be a good level of description. Not too little so that the story comes out vague/bland/boring, and not too much so that it doesn't halt the story line.
- Avoid awkward phrasing. Make sure there's a flow. Read your story aloud to yourself to make sure everything rolls off the tongue naturally.
- If the formatting of the story breaks visual mode on the editor (Classic or not), it will be deleted. To prevent this, use the Source Mode on the editor and paste your story there (see above again). If needed, add a line break between paragraphs to avoid the resulting wall of text.
- Don't indent in Source Mode. Yes, in books every new paragraph is indented. However the wiki's format is quite different in that indentation isn't used. If you indent on here, your text will show up in an annoying box with a slidebar you have to use to read the story from left to right. If that sounds annoying and overly complicated, it's because it is.
- It should be spelled correctly (already in there). Also, know the differences: "Your" (possessive) "You're" (You are). "There" (A place) "Their" (possessive) "They're" (They are.) "It's" (It is) "Its" (possessive).
- The story needs to make a degree of sense. It should be consistent and readable. Now, many of you are saying "Wait, what if I want to have a more fragmented approach to telling my story, ala David Lynch or Quentin Tarantino?" Well then, go for it. Just make sure that things eventually come together.
- There should be some kind of hook; something to grab the reader's attention and entrench them in the story. One way is to start the story out in a unique setting, instantly making the reader want to read more about whatever bizarre scenery you are painting for them in their mind. Other ways are usually drawn out as the story is being told, or will hit the reader in the face like a bag of bowling balls at the end of the story. Whichever approach you use, keep the reader interested, or it obviously makes for a boring read
- (Micropastas) There should be a plot of at least two (2) events. Micropastas may not be "plot-driven", persay, but a story always has some form of plot. The events can be extremely minor, even slightly unnoticeable, but they still need to be there.
- (Poems) Please use Stanzas.
- (Poems) It should tell some kind of story or have a sense of interpretation.
- (Poems) It should have some kind of meter and prose. Just because you write one sentence per line doesn't make it a poem. Do your research on poetry before you decide you want to be the next Edgar Allen Poe.
- (Poems) It cannot be AABB rhyme scheme. (First two lines rhyme, second two lines rhyme. First doesn't rhyme with third and second doesn't rhyme with fourth.)
- (Poems) It needs to have some depth and complexity. Stick to the same subject and do not jump around.
- (Journals/Diaries) It should read like a journal. This shouldn't be a case of updating such blog/write in "your" diary when there's a murderous beast/evil plushie/someone "you" owe money to outside "your" window trying to kill "you".
- (Journal/Diaries) People have this odd habit of acting like a journal is going to get read by someone else. Please don't. A journal is the opposite: Personal. On the other hand, a blog post would be a more public thing read by an audience.
- (Journal/Diaries) People aren't going to explain to themselves who people are. Dropping hints can be fine, such as events where a person is engaged with something they like, but full on saying it is unrealistic.
We don't prohibit Original Characters, but if you are intent on writing a story with them, then please, DO NOT base them off a pre-existing character. Any stories involving "Jeff-Inspired", "BEN-Inspired", "Photonegative Mickey-Inspired", or other "Inspired" characters will be deleted as spin-offs here, but can be posted to our sister site, Spinpasta Wiki.
Questions to Ask Yourself
- Is this progressing the story?
- Is this interesting, engaging or making the story better in any way?
- Is this necessary to understand the story and/or will it come back later?
- Why so many standards?
- Would you rather read something legitimately decent, such as this, or something like this? Quite a simple question. The first. We want quality work, not something that had no effort put into it.
- Why can't you go easy on the standards a little bit?
- To keep the site's quality guidelines clean and clear, making them easy and low would probably downgrade the site's quality.
- My story got deleted as per these standards. What do I do?
- Use Deletion Appeal. And when you do, MAKE SURE you follow the appeal guidelines set forth on the page.
- What do you mean by description?
- Put an image in the author's head. Don't overblow it and halt the storyline but don't make it vague and boring. Straight sentences without any form of legitimate description tend to make for a boring story. Overdone description? Same thing.
- It's about finding the "as perfect as possible" amount of balance in your story. Is your story like Tobias Wolff's Hunters in the Snow, a story which relies upon description of the setting and character attitudes along with Tub's perception of the other hunters in order to provide a symbolic foreshadowing of events? Or is it like Ernest Hemmingway's Hills Like White Elephants, which is mainly conversation and dialogue between two people and doesn't have to rely on it? Generally, it will be somewhere in between.
- Do I have to spell everything correctly in a dialogue area? I want to intentionally misspell a certain character's dialogue.
- Sort of. It depends upon the character's dialect. If it's a US southerner, what words do they commonly mispronounce? "Your" would be acceptable as "Yer", "Get" as "Git", so on and so forth. A stereotypical Russian will occasionally leave out words such as "an" or a "the" every now and then, because they don't fully know the English Language or it's not their first language. That character's dialect determines whether the intentional misspell is bad, good, or in between.
- What do you mean by must make sense? Isn't this Creepypasta where stuff isn't supposed to "make sense"?
- We mean the story itself, not it's elements. Dogscape, an original creepypasta, is a wonderful story that makes no sense or anything else. The setting is made of dog, the plot line is weird, and people do things commonly that we wouldn't even consider touching. On the other hand, you've got the bad side: Things like this. That's the bad kind of sense. We have no explanation how that story doesn't make sense because there isn't a safe point to stand on and explain from. It's fairly literally senseless. That's what we mean by make sense.
- How are these standards enforced?
- In a basic variety of ways. If it's not too far off - for example, just having a few misspellings, it's edited out. On the other hand, if it's leaving out plot points, has a number of holes, is excessively bland, it gets deleted.
- Though really, these are less like rules and more like guidelines. They only apply if said things detract from the story. While meeting them is a rule, these are meant for a general idea of why a user's story could get deleted.
- There's nothing about "creepy" or anything. Is there some kind of guideline towards unnerving the reader or something?
- Not really. Creepy is more of a subjective term here - that is, an opinion. We look at more objective approaches toward the acceptance of a story. That being said, we aren't expecting your first story to be Suggested Reading material right out of the box, just that you put effort into it.
- These are way too strict! You're all just a bunch of corrupt idiots who delete stories for fun! You deleted my pasta that my second grade teacher liked even though it was riddled with grammar errors, plotholes, and was a wall of text! I'm going to Deviantart!
- We really don't need what you have to say if you are either going to rage, or not follow these guidelines and requirements and then start complains, etc. Good luck, though!
- Project:Style Guide for Writing - A basic rundown of general needed grammar.
- Project:Writing Advice - Advice blogs made by certain users that will help in your writing.
- Project:How to Write Creepypasta - Title says it all.