Using HTML in Web Addventures

by ArgoForg

This is just a quick run down of the coding you might want to use in your episodes of an addventure, to make your episodes look the best they can look.  I'm not going into heinous detail here, and believe me, it's mostly painless. The Addventure code is set up for writers, not necessarily publishers, just like HTML (HyperText Markup Language) itself.  Alone, just adding text in normal 'writing' mode will give you a nice running block with no paragraph breaks, no emphasis other than your punctuation, and (if you're inclined to talk a lot, like me,) generally will be harder to read than Chaucer without Cliff Notes.

However, there are various ways you can add to your episodes to make them more visually appealing to the casual reader, and that's what we're most interested in here, for now.  So strap on your coding helmets, and let's take a gander at the possibilities you have available to you.


Paragraphs and spacing:

First off, if you want to add an extra space at the end of sentences, or just for the heckuvit, remember that HTML doesn't ordinarily read more than one space between words, so any extra spaces you make with your space bar are just discarded.  So there's the keyphrase  . (I usually remember that as "not a back space.") Don't forget the ampersand (&) at the beginning and the semicolon at the end!  What this little gem does is offer you the opportunity to add an extra space here or there in your writing. This one isn't so important, granted. I tend to use it to give a second space after sentences, but that's just how I was trained to type. In some fonts (and sizes) it's a good idea. But here's a sample of what it does:

One space between words. <--- single space between words, standard space bar.
Two  spaces  between  words. <--- coded like this: "Two(space bar)&nbsp;spaces(space)&nbsp;between..."
Three   spaces   between   words. <--- coded like this:"Three(space)&nbsp;&nbsp;spaces..." and so on.

As far as paragraph breaks, there are two ways to do this; the most accepted and easy way is to place the code <p> (or paragraph break) at the end of your paragraph. This will show up like so:

blahblahblahblahblah Hi there, blatant plug to check out the darker age site

nextparagraph blahblah...

The other way isn't quite as clean, especially if you don't regularly begin your paragraphs with tab stops (which in most versions of HTML means typing '&nbsp;' three or four times to act as a standard tab in most word-processors. It's called a line break.  The code used for it is <br>, added to the end of your paragraphs. A word of warning, though! It offers you no extra room between paragraphs, so if you have no other way to tell paragraphs apart, your text will end up in one large block. Observe:

This is some text, done up in a paragraph style, just to show you the effect of using the line break code. I'm typing a really long sentence here, so bear with me, because there is no point really to my writing here other than rambling. How bout them Cubs? Yeah, I know. You can quit laughing now. Okay, that's enough. Now, we insert the <br> and start a new paragraph.
And here is that new paragraph. You see what I mean by starting a new line directly after the previous line of text? It would be easier to tell if I had used a tab stop for my opening line of the paragraph, like so:
   Ah, a little better, at least. At least here you can tell I'm starting a new paragraph, and that will become that much more noticeable when the second line doesn't appear indented. But anyway, you see what I mean?

There are other things, like ordered and numbered lists, but those are really more confusing that useful in the addventure. For now, just remember <br>, <p> and &nbsp;. Cool. Let's go on.



There are numerous ways to format your text to give it that extra added umph! that a lot of writers (including yours truly) leans toward. The most important ones you will probably want to keep in mind are bold, italic, and underline. That way, you can give emphasis here and there in your episode:

"Oh my!"  Harriet squealed.  "I'm turning to stone!"
"Stone?"  Diane shrieked.  "I'm turning to gold!"
"Must be #!&?!@! nice!"  Rebecca screeched.  "I'm turning into lime jello complete with a $@%!&?! cherry on top!! "
(There's always room for jello.  ^_^ )

All of these codes, bold, italics and underlining, involve a simple one-letter code enclosed a brackets to turn them on and a similarly simple one with a slash to turn them off.  Enclosing a term within <b> </b> will make it bold.  Enclosing it within <i> </i> will italicize it, and enclosing it within <u> </u> will underline it. Keep in mind, once you turn a formatting on, with the <b>, <i>, or <u> codes, it will remain on until you tell the HTML to turn it off with the proper </b> </i> or </u> code. See?:

Oh, wow, she thought.   He is such a hunk!  I could sit here all day staring at him!

She remained doing just that for the next six days, until it became painfully obvious she was staring.

Meanwhile, in the secret labratory of Doctor Nefarious...

See? Not turning off your codes can be confusing to the reader, and what's more they can make your episode look gimpy. God knows, we don't want that! So remember, turn them OFF when your done!

Now, as far as those codes go, you can also mix and match, to get bolded underlines, italicized bold, and such, as shown below:

<i>You are <b>such</b> a <b><u>dork!</u></b></i> reads like so:

You are such a dork!

Also note that the italics remained on the whole time, because I started them first and did not turn them off using </i> until the end. Most HTML coders prefer that for ease of use, you bracket your formatting codes, which essentially means, the last one you turn ON is the first one you turn OFF, then the second-to last one, and so on.  I honestly don't think it makes a difference coding-wise, but it's a good practice to get into, because it helps you to remember to turn off your codes.

A note of warning, yet again, becuase it can't be said enough: Primo, First off, A-number-one, do NOT use these codes if you are inclined to forget to turn them off, because the Addventure will not turn them off for you. ALWAYS remember the </b>,</i>, or </u>, especially in the Addventure, where you get no chance to make further edits. Sometimes, it's not a bad idea to make the text of your episode in an HTML-coding program like HTML-Pro or Arachnophilia, or even notepad, so you can make sure your formatted text looks good before cutting and pasting it to the Addventure, especially if it's brand new to you.


Anyway, hopefully that'll get you started. There may be more added onto here later, including the FONT command, the CENTER command, and other some suches, but those aren't nearly as important to the Addventure as what I've added so far. Hope this helps for now, and see you around the addventure! -ArgoForg



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