Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Novels/Archive 6

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Archive 5 Archive 6 Archive 7

Don Quixote

I am preparing to embark upon a major rewrite of the article about this very important book, together with User:Yannismarou and we would welcome any contributions, thoughts, ideas, suggestions from editors who have more experience in this area. DQ is, of course, much more than a book - it is a, possibly the, seminal work of fiction in the Western canon with a vast cultural legacy and the article as it stands is woefully inadequate given its importance. Can anyone point us to a guideline or page that might help in the framing of its organisation and structure? I plan to borrow form the current Spanish version (a featured article I believe), but if there are other articles that are similar in scope as a frame of reference it would be useful. Eusebeus 23:58, 2 January 2007 (UTC)

Of course we have our Wikipedia:WikiProject Novels/ArticleTemplate which is our generic pattern. You could have a look at Master and Commander as an example of how this can be used. :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 09:09, 3 January 2007 (UTC)
Also you might like to submit Don Quixote as a collaboration of the month, the current one is the Scarlet Letter for January, if there is a enough support for your novel it could well be adopted as the collaboration for February and you would get more focus on it from other editors. :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 09:09, 3 January 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for the tips. I think we have it covered without requiring formal collaboration although any help is of course appreciated. Eusebeus 18:07, 4 January 2007 (UTC)
Per Eusebeus. Any help is appreciated. Maybe formal collaboration could also add feedback, but this is something we'll see, and may be premature now. We'll see!--Yannismarou 14:46, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

Book series infobox

Hi, all. A technical issue came up over the weekend that's a little beyond me to solve. I worked a little on the new article Time Quartet, which is about a series of books by Madeleine L'Engle. Someone requested an infobox, but the only appropriate one I found, Template:Book Series infobox, is almost impossible to use. There's no documentation on it, and the code itself is confusing and so complex as to be unreadable. So far it seems to have been used only for a relatively small number of articles, and I can see why. I copied a simplified version from some Dragonlance article or other, but that's not a long term solution. Any chance someone can make a more user-friendly version of this? I can see it being needed in the long run for lots and lots of articles about book series (e.g. Pern, Discworld, etc.). Thanks! Karen | Talk | contribs 01:30, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

This appears to be most used for Comic books that are part of series. In otherwords it is not really designed for the use it suggests - I have suggested a renaming.:: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 09:02, 3 January 2007 (UTC)
Oh, and while we're at it, it would be nice to have a character infobox that's specific to literary characters. The one I've been using is primarily television-oriented. Karen | Talk | contribs 01:32, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

Status of Wikipedia:Notability (books) - historical, proposal, or guideline?

The WP:BK talk page discussion has trailed off -- I would be interested in people's opinions of whether the page is now historical, an active proposal, or a guideline. Feel free to respond below or on the talk page. Thanks, TheronJ 19:41, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

Japanese light novels

Hi everyone. A question's come up as to whether or not Japanese light novels are considered within the scope of the project. In the past, I know that light novels were considered to have traits in common with manga and graphic novels and as such, weren't included but I'm wondering what critera was used to make that comparison. From what light novels I've read, the story is told through a regular prose narrative (though sometimes it can be irregular in structure such as is the case with the Boogiepop series, which tends to tell the same story from at least five different concurrent POVs), and there is no interaction of art and narrative such as what you find in manga and graphic novels. A lot of them read like YA novels, if I'm to be honest. (I think that's also the target audience in Japan, if I understand correctly.) There are illustrations but they seem to be more for decoration than anything else. So should they be considered in scope or be kept out of scope? It might be useful to come up with a definitive answer now, because many more light novels are coming out in English this year and this will prevent some confusion later down the road. -- 9muses 13:00, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

Maybe this can be the subject of a spin-off "task force" such as the short stories task force? 23skidoo 01:05, 6 January 2007 (UTC)
That's a good suggestion. It looks like the idea of task forces/working groups has been brought up over at WP:Anime, so maybe that's the way to go since many light novels have been adapted into anime & manga and those adaptations will need to be covered in the pertinent articles as well. -- 9muses 03:47, 6 January 2007 (UTC)
A lot of the articles on these light novels basically consist of a brief mention that the novels exist, followed by an article on the anime adaptation. If the novel in question hasn't been translated, this is fine, but for the translated novels they should probably be treated like legitimate novels, which they are. It seems to be barely under the scope of the WP:Anime project, and would probably benefit from getting some suggestions from the Novels project. Doceirias 03:41, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

Related topic -- I'm going to create a category for light novel writers, but thought I should ask what the category should be called. Light novel writers? Light novel authors? Light novelists? Doceirias 20:45, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

They should be called Category:Light novel writers which should be itself within Category:Writers by fiction subject area :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 11:04, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

Proposal to police own templates

As a project, templates of the project belong to us in a sense, so I suggest we establish the precendent of discussing such adminstrative minutia as renaming et. al. without resorting to WP:TFD, which at the moment discusses little anyway!
   State your views on that assertion here, and on the specific matter as indicated. Thanks // FrankB

Books notability proposal being used to justify AFD

Please note that an apparently notable novel, The House of Dolls, is up for AFD here. What concerns me is the nominator is citing the proposed Books Notability guideline as justification. I've added a note indicating it is not an approved policy/guideline and should not be used for justifying AFD until it is. I fear there might be a precedent being set if this article is deleted using a guideline/policy that hasn't been properly figured out. 23skidoo 16:00, 11 January 2007 (UTC)

  • Looks like the article is safe for now, with far more Keep votes than Delete votes. 23skidoo 14:59, 15 January 2007 (UTC)

AFD notice

William Wells Brown (Clotel) Story

What are some ways brown criticizes this society in his novel.Kim — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 16:43, 30 January 2007

Hero/ine lists projectified

East of Eden copyright infringements?

There have been some disputes regarding East of Eden. This has been assessed as "Top Importance" by WikiProject Novels. Please check out the situation and make some comments. − Twas Now ( talkcontribse-mail ) 08:14, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

1st cover images

Should we have a manual work list/ category for novels that need 1st cover images? My thoughts are it would help clean up Category:Novels with an incomplete infobox and many of the current work lists if we did. Thoughts??? Jask99 17:34, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

Yes, yes, a million times yes! I've often thought something along those lines would be quite helpful, speaking as someone who spends a majority of their time in this WP updating infoboxes and adding images. The first edition book cover is just as important as the other information included in the infobox, if not more, and yet a lot of people skip over it because they don't want to hunt the image down. If we had some sort of an image taskforce, or even an automated category/list, that would make my job a lot easier. Not to mention, you know, the articles would look a lot better. Heh. María: (habla ~ cosas) 18:11, 8 February 2007 (UTC)
I would find such a list to be very useful, as hunting down first edition cover images is a lot of what I do around here (mostly for science fiction novels, but I could probably branch out). Such a list would help in focusing my efforts. -- Antepenultimate 18:27, 8 February 2007 (UTC)
Good Ideas, ok to support this set of ideas I have created two new settings for the {{NovelsWikiProject}} and two supporting categories. A new parameter "|needs-infobox-cover" which can be set to "yes" or "1st" and use of these populates the categories - Category:Novel has infobox needing cover or Category:Novel has infobox needing 1st edition cover respectively. See how it goes, obviously they both need populating first! :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 10:40, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

Is there a particular online source that is best for finding first edition covers that qualify as fair use? A number of potential covers had disqualified themselves either because a) they were too small to use or b) they've been watermarked in some way. 23skidoo 13:36, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

Personally don't know of one - would if there was. Still needs careful research I do believe. :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 14:16, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
Careful research or someone with a heck of a collection. As you know, some first editions can cost thousands of dollars. Occasionally reproductions of first edition covers are used, maybe with slight alterations (I'm thinking specifically of Souvenir Press reissuing the Modesty Blaise series in paperback with the original hardback artwork). In lieu of actual first editions being unavailable, any objection to using that sort of artwork? 23skidoo 14:50, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
Not at all, I believe we should prefer as close to the 1st edition as possible (reproductions are fine). All I would say is that each usage of "any" image should be clearly marked for what it is. I.e. no reproductions are "passed off" as the 1st edition. It just needs to say it is from the proproduction in the "image caption" parameter. :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 15:02, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
I have quite a bit of luck searching through online used book retailers, especially sites such as Abebooks, which allow search results to be slimmed down to just those with "bookseller supplied photos" as well as "first edition." (I do these searches seperately, and compare.) The first edition search, however, really just turns up anything with "first" in the summary, so you have to be careful when attempting to determine the "true first" (especially since there is no shortage of sellers lacking scruples, leading to multiple claims of "true first"). It's often helpful to further organize the "first edition" search by "highest price", though not always, particularly when a book was released as a paperback original - the first hardcover editions are still preferred by collectors, and so cost much more, despite sometimes being released years later. I always try to rectify my finding on Abebooks (or Biblio, sometimes - I find eBay to be a pain (watermarks) and Amazon is flat-out completely unreliable, IMO) with other online sources that list bibliographic info (FYI - I have found the Internet Speculative Fiction Database - a site that claims to contain biblio info - to be woefully incomplete in almost all cases). This method has been pretty successful for my purposes, largely focusing on SF novels from 1950 - 1980. I doubt it would work very well for classic novels published before the age of dustjackets, though. Also, many of the images require straightening and/or cropping. -- Antepenultimate 16:35, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
The only problem I have with that method is many of the images I've found have been too small for use. I don't know if any actual style rule is in place for this, but the general rule I've always used is the book cover (at least for infobox use) should look reasonable at 200px. Occasionally you will find a website that actually does specialize in putting up book covers for a particular author. There's one for William S. Burroughs for example. My personal project to create articles based on the Simon Templar series was dealt a setback when a website that had terrific cover images of almost all the first editions for that series shut down literally days before I was planning to make use of the images (with permission) in the infoboxes. The only other place I've found images pertaining to that series are little thumbnail-sized images on a Saint fansite so I've had to rely on my own collection of paperbacks from much later. 23skidoo 16:42, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
I rarely have this problem with Abebooks or Biblio... you have to click through to the book's individual seller listing and find that "display larger image" link. It's not a definate, but in my experience, it works for a conservative estimate of 70% of the novels I'm looking for. The odds are better if the book was very popular or award-winning, of course. Sometimes, even if the image quality is too low at Abebooks, it at least will tell me what the image is I'm looking for, making a Google image search a viable tool in the hunt for first edition covers. -- Antepenultimate 19:37, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
I took a look at some of the Simon Templar books, and the fact that the earliest were published in the '30s does make it kind of hard to apply this method. I was able to find mostly first American edition images for the earliest novels (Wikipedia pages state that the first editions were the British for these). For instance: The Last Hero first American edition (info)(image - shrinking it a little would clear up the compression problems, I think - but it's real boring, anyway, and not the true first, so why bother?). Skip ahead a couple of decades and luck improves - Here's a pretty nice image for the first edition of The Saint Sees it Through (info)(image - needs a slight straightening and a crop, but real nice quality). If you want me to try and find some more, I'd be glad too, although I'm kind of busy for the moment - It'd have to be a "when I get around to it" kind of thing. -- Antepenultimate 20:25, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
(Responding to above but starting a new thread column). Were you able to find any of the British editions for those Saint books? They were published in the UK first so we should use those images when possible (though I wouldn't complain about a first US edition being used). 23skidoo 22:07, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
This is getting pretty specific, so I've replied on your talk page. -- Antepenultimate 23:14, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
Is there any discussion anywhere of why this is desirable, or is it taken for granted? Notinasnaid 10:15, 13 February 2007 (UTC)
There is somewhere, but enough to say that in the publishing world the 1st edition is "the" event. It is the occasion when the publication, literary work etc., first sees the light of day. So it is this edition which has more importance than any other it is the focus of news and the main point of history for any book or similar work. Thus the cover to that edition is the one to have. I hope that answers your question. Any more queries do ask! :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 11:06, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

The End of Fair Use? (for our purposes, anyway)

Hi all. I was wondering what everyone's thoughts are on this. If I'm reading that correctly, it appears that it may not be long before most Fair Use images - such as the majority of our novel cover art - are to be deleted. Now, I can see that discussions about this have been going on for months, and I'll admit a great deal of ignorance here - I'm not a copyright lawyer and never before concerned myself with the actions of the Foundation Board. I've uploaded quite a bit of first edition cover art, and sometimes it takes a good chunk of time and effort to locate these... I'm certainly not going to waste any further time locating more if everyone's just waiting for the Foundation's go-ahead to wholesale delete these images. What are everyone's thoughts? Is this the end of images for novel articles? I hope I'm wrong in my interpretation of this. -- Antepenultimate 01:17, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

So do I, Fair use for std cover art is well established and I can see no legal or moral, or even commercial problems with. In fact quite the reverse. I also believe Wikipedia would be impoverished by it's loss. :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 09:24, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
Agreed. I've personally stopped uploading images of any kind to Wikipedia due to the ever-changing rules and am in the process of emptyiing my watchlist because I don't want to be distressed when I see all the images I've worked hard to upload taken down. Wikipedia is going to lose a lot of supporters because of this. A friend of mine was trying to say that the text is the important thing, but I have to counter that the Internet is a visual medium; images are a must, otherwise all you have is a screen full of text which I personally find very difficult to read. (Does this mean I always want pictures in my books, you may ask? No, because none of the books in my collection are also a light source). The frustrating thing is no one will tell me if Wikipedia has ever actually had any legal programs regarding images; for all we know the courts could say "who cares?" Incidentally has anyone looked at the spin-off discussion Wikipedia:Featured articles/Image survey? If I'm reading that one right, it would pretty much disqualify any article on novels published after the PD cut-off year of 1923 because it would require every Feature Article candidate to have at least one free-use image. Try finding a free-use image to illustrate a novel published in 2007. 23skidoo 12:44, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
Along those lines, it is interesting to note that for the past two days, the Main Page Featured Articles' accompanying pictures have both been Fair Use images - the same type of images derided as mere "eye candy" by many in support of removing these images. It is a question of aesthetics, especially for the Novel articles - but 23skidoo is 100% correct, nobody is going to get excited about browsing 8,000+ articles that are nothing but a block of text. It does seem as though the Foundation Board is more concerned with phantom legal concerns than improving Wikipedia at this point. And it seems to boil down to the Board's desire to have all content be "freely available" - including to those who would use it for commercial gain. Therefore, Fair Use images would no longer be "Fair Use" if a businessman wholesale copied and pasted WP onto a CD and started selling it, I guess. To which I say: Isn't that the businessman's problem? And wouldn't he be the one with the legal concerns? Why do we have make Wikipedia the blandest website on earth just to keep some hypothetical, unlikely and lazy businessman from being sued? Sorry to rant, but this is all very depressing. Especially since it seems to be a decision that is already beyond discussion, as far as the Board is concerned - and certain deletionists are already chomping at the bit to get their chance to wipe out more people's hard work. -- Antepenultimate 14:58, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
I'm waiting to see what the Foundation will do. I will miss the cover images, but we'll see. (A thornier issue is that any non-trivial plot summary of a copyrighted is probably justified, if at all, as fair use as well . . .). TheronJ 15:17, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
Oh believe me, that's next. Once the images are gone, the deletionists (to borrow Antepenultimate's term) will be looking for something else to get rid of. As it is, I know there are those who resent the presence of "non-academic" articles in Wikipedia - such as articles about TV series, non-classic novels, etc. And they'll be quite happy to see articles speedy deleted under the WP:V rules that they keep brandishing about. I've threatened to quit the project a few times, and have now pared myself down to simply maintaining the occasional article I created, but before long even those articles are going to be adversely affected at which point it's just a waste of time for me to contribute. I know no one owns the Wikipedia articles, but people who have spend time -- for free -- working on these things are being discriminated against by the proposed and new rules, and the end result is people are going to abandon Wikipedia. All we need is for someone to start a rival Wikipedia (hey, even using Wikipedia content since it's supposed to be free) but with the attutude that no one cares about whether one gets image permission forms signed in triplicate by a lawyer, and you'll see people defecting like nobody's business. I would jump ship in a heartbeat if someone introduced a Wiki 2.0 along those lines because I'm so fed up with this place. I only continue to contribute because I have been asked to, but I no longer have the enthusiasm I had for Wikipedia a year ago. 23skidoo 16:11, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
I sincerely doubt that booksellers pay to use the images, so it doesn't make sense for Wikipedia to worry about it. However, if an indivdual author or illustrator had a legitimate complaint, that would be different. Are we actually close to not being able to use fair-use images in the articles? PeregrineV 22:20, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
When I started my online L'Engle bibliography nearly a decade ago, I asked Dell (which was not yet part of Random House) for permission to reproduce small images of paperback covers. They eventually got back to me with the answer of no, stating that a) the lawyers were concerned that the cover artist might be entitled to compensation for the appearance, and b) that Amazon (pretty much the only online use at the time, other than the publisher's site) had a special arrangement to use the covers. In the years since then I've had numerous complaints from readers about the lack on images on the site, but I've never tried to revisit the issue. Obviously that was several computers (and AOL upgrades) ago, so I doubt I could get to the text of that old email now. But it seems to me that a lot has changed since them, on both sides of the equation. The book covers are on lots and lots of booksellers' sites and elsewhere, and I see no sign that the publishers have a problem with that. It seems silly to suppose that the use of a book cover image is okay on a commercial site, which indirectly profits by its use, but not okay on a non-profit encyclopedia. At the same time, though, there seems to be a bit of a tug-of-war in the larger culture between proponents of extreme lock-it-up-forever copyright and the more laissez faire attitude that has characterized much of the web until recently. As for a synopsis being a fair use issue, that's akin to the principle that you can't copyright an idea. IANAL, but I'm pretty sure a plot summary has never been considered a violation unless it infringes on the way the actual work is presented, i.e. with liberal quotations from the work itself. Karen | Talk | contribs 01:25, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

Another possible problem for (some) Novels articles

Not all novels are the subject of third-party scrutiny, yet they are still notable enough to have articles written about them. I'm starting to see Template:Primarysources starting to show up, and in theory this tag could end up being placed on a good percentage of the novels articles since, as I and others have noted, the articles themselves are about primary sources. The tag, thankfully, isn't being connected to the speedy delete craze that people want to attach to WP:V "violators". Yet. 23skidoo 15:04, 24 February 2007 (UTC)

If I have the time, I like to include external references to links about the novel in question. However, considering the novel is the primary source, I hesitate to take too much from it verbatim. I feel that way about the cover blurb, unless it does such a good job of describing the novel that I can't improve upon it. And any analysis This novel about about man's deep seated fear of the number 13. that I would do would have to be "supported" by sources, or else it is considered primary research, correct? PeregrineV 22:10, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
It is, I just like to be as well referenced as possible. But with a sensible balance. We really do need to encourage more and more references and in-line citations. So the more we can find and add the better. So many of the novel articles on wikipedia are of a poor standard in this respect. It is a feature of the open editoring policy and few really understanding the nature of an academic writing style and how to do it. that is not to say we should produce dry prose, just well researched. :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 09:01, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
But the fact remains you're still not going to find a heck of a lot of scholarly prose written about, say, Follow the Saint. And I don't start spending hours poring through libraries for obscure references until someone starts paying me. ;-) 23skidoo 20:18, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Its a book

people its a fiction novel, that has some christian believes in it. Get a grip and just enjoy it as a book, if you happened to gain spirtual from it good for you, if you think the spirtual stuff is gabage then just read it as what it is a fiction novel

Please sign your comments and, er, what are you trying to say, exactly? 23skidoo 21:02, 26 February 2007 (UTC)
In fact what on earth are you talking about. This is so incomprehensible it is almost gibberish out of context! :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 09:14, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
I checked the anon's edit history and this IP has never even contributed to any novels articles. Let's ignore it as gibberish. 23skidoo 14:32, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

Already Dead Ingored?

I just made Already dead, and yes it is a book which a movie is in the works for it.

It is on sale at here.

OBEY STARMAN 19:04, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

I just moved the page to Already Dead as per naming guidelines. Please take a look at Wikipedia:WikiProject Novels/ArticleTemplate and consider adding more content. Also, you don't need to announce new novel articles once you create them; if you have questions or concerns, however, this is the place to ask. :) María: (habla ~ cosas) 20:21, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

Question: scope

Is the banner for only articles on novels, or for anything relevant to novels? For example, fictional character pages. — Emiellaiendiay 07:28, 12 February 2007 (UTC)

Yes, I've been wondering that, too, with respect to novel-related fictional places, fictional books, fictional characters, book series, key concepts (e.g. kything) and articles about authors themselves. Karen | Talk | contribs 08:22, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
If you can indicate where we re not clear let us know. All articles on Novels, novellas, novelettes and short stories & collections of same are in scope. Also subjects included in those narrative prose stories, so that means the characters, locations etc. But not the authors they are biographies and our of scope. Partly as they often author of plenty of other writing types. :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 08:56, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for the reply. So then fictional character pages are within the scope? Here's an example: Emily Byrd Starr. — Emiellaiendiay 06:47, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
Yes. :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 08:55, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
Ah, I see now that it's very clear on the main page. Thanks. — Emiellaiendiay 07:07, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

Lonely Londoners

I just made an article. Please check it to evaluate notability and its beginnings. Please add any comments. I am studying this text in college as a broad humanities text, so it must be notable. Analysis comes from college lectures and other reliable insights that are difficult to source. And it is always important to note that literary analysis is in itself individual perspective. Also let me know how I can add images. LifeScience 16:30, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

The article in question turns out to be The Lonely Londoners and I have made a few modifications but it is in needs of more input indications for which I have added to the article talk page. :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 17:15, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

Watership Down

Under Cultural References, I believe that the Death Cab For Cutie music video for "I Will Follow You Into The Dark" has many Watership Down references. I'm not sure if this falls into the scope of that section though. The YouTube video can be seen here: -- 21:23, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Any references would need to be verifiable, ie. links made by thrid parties and references given.! :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 09:23, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Have two new articles about SciFi books to be added.

They are as follows

Jason Frost (author) And Paul Cook (author)

I'd appreciate it if anyone could get some background information on Jason Frost and his Warlord & other series or books (if any) as I only have the six warlord books and not much else.

As for Paul Cook, I did some recent cleaning up of the article and might add a page about his Book Halo. Which I have and read a while ago, so referencing should be simplistic and easy. Thanks, Nateland 22:37, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Bio articles aren't normally our thing, (see WPP:BIO) but I have gone through and standardised the layout and format. Hope it helps some. :: Kevinalewis : (Talk Page)/(Desk) 09:22, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
Thanks, it did help. A LOT :-).

P.S. the Deathworld article on the deathworld series by Harry Harrison has some fromatting problems. I recently fixed the linking to these articles but as for the formatting. I'm not sure what needs to be done.