First of all, of course, there are stories. General and Reviewed status stories are available to all site visitors, and Beta status stories can be read by logged in members. Every story overview and chapter page has a Reader Toolbar that gives the reader some very handy buttons to bookmark stories and authors, recommend things and send emails.
You can use the story sort bar from any page in the site to look up stories about a particular character or author, or use the Keyword search box to narrow things down a bit more. After you've done a story sort, if you are logged in, you can save your results to easily look up this same selection next time. There is also a Stories by title alphabetical index.
There are story recommendations to look up. Members can make recommendations.
There are comments all over. You can read them as a group on the main Comments page and you can look up all comments about a particular story. Each chapter displays comments specific to it. Members can leave comments for an author any time, either public or private.
If you are a member, you have "My Library", where you can keep track of favorite stories and authors, manage your saved searches, read alerts, and manage your comments.
Finally, there is a link to the Stories forums where general discussion of stories takes place.
Beta: These are works in progress by HASA members that the author doesn't yet want the general public to read.
General: This is a catch-all category. If a story is not Beta and it is not Reviewed, but the author wants it available for others to read, it will be in General.
Reviewed: These are stories that have been evaluated by the reviewers' pool and have been judged as excellent stories by the majority of the reviewers.
There is a Reader Toolbox at the top and bottom of every story overview page and every chapter page in the Stories area. Here is a quick run down on what is in the toolbox.
The AddThis button is available to all readers. Use it to print, email, bookmark and share a story.
This button is available to all readers. If you would like to email the author, click the "Email Author" button. You will go to a form where you can indicate whether your comment is about a specific story or to the author generally. If you send an email, the author can reply to you directly. Unlike comments, emails to authors do not get shown to other readers.
Recommend a Story
If you are a HASA member and you wish to recommend a story, use the "Recommend" button to reach the Recommendation form. If you have already recommended a story and would like to edit the recommendation, click the "Edit Rec." button.
You add or remove a story from your story favorites list by clicking the "Add Story" or "Drop Story" button in the toolbox. If you have the story bookmarked, you will also see a "Set Bookmark" button on multi chapter stories so you can reset where your story link takes you.
You can sign up to get alerts on stories from authors. Click "Get Story Alert" to be added to the list. Click "Drop Alert" to leave the notification list. In general, an older finished story will not have alerts. Most alerts are for works in progress.
If you have or would like to create a playlist and add a story to it, click the "Add to Playlist" button. There, you can create a list on the fly or add the story to one of your existing lists. Playlists are a fun way to let people know about groups of stories you really like, and where you can provide some details about why you like them so much.
Along with a list of favorite stories, you can create one to track your favorite authors. Just click "Add Author" to put someone on your list. From your library, you can click the author's name and see all of her stories. If you re done following an author, simply click "Drop Author" to remove someone from your list.
Just like story alerts, but from the author generally. You might check with an author to see if she is sending out alerts or would consider sending alerts.
There are a number of ways to locate stories on HASA:
Story Sort Bar
The most popular way is to use the story sort bar at the top of every HASA page. Create a custom search by selecting an author, era, genre, character and/or status. The stories are sorted by most recently updated.
You can look up stories that have been recommended by HASA members over the years. This is useful if you are looking for a particular kind of story, like a good AU or a gap-filler.
Most story pages have a Keyword search form in the side navigation column. This form searches the titles and summaries of stories, but not the story text. Here are some tips for an effective keyword search:
- Each line may contain one or more search words.
- Do not use commas - use spaces to separate terms.
- Separate lines are used as an OR search.
- Words in the same line are used as an AND search.
- Partial words will also be searched; for example, "owyn" will find both "Eowyn" and "Éowyn."
- If you are unsure about spelling, use only part of the word.
There are two kinds of bookmarks available on HASA. Both of them are available to logged in members, while the general public can only use the AddThis button.
Members - Save to Favorites
This stores the story in your own Library on HASA. The story is then always available anywhere in the site from the story favorites drop-down menu at the right hand end of the site header. To save to favorites:
- Go to the Stories section of HASA
- Click on either the overview or any chapter of the story you want to add
- In the Reader Toolbox that appears at the top and the foot of these pages, click the button that says "Add Story"
- The page refreshes and the story is added to your list.
- If you are on the Overview, the first chapter is bookmarked. If you are on a specific chapter, that chapter is bookmarked.
- When reading a long story, you can update your bookmark and set it to a new chapter by clicking on the "Set Bookmark" button in the Toolbox.
Members and Public - AddThis Button
On every story list and in every Reader Toolbox, there is a bright orange button with a plus sign on it. This is the AddThis service's button. To use the button:
- Hover your mouse over the button
- A pop-up window appears, with different commands and social networking sites
- You can send the page to the printer, bookmark the page, send the URL to an email address or link it to one of the services, such as Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, etc.
- Click on the desired button
- If you use IE or Firefox, there are browser plug-ins that work directly with the AddThis button.
You can also just bookmark a story in your regular browser Favorites list.
If you have bookmarked a story via AddThis, go to the site where you bookmarked it and follow the deletion procedure there.
There are two ways to delete your Favorite story bookmarks:
- From the story's overview or chapter page, click the "Drop Story" button. The page will refresh and the story will be removed from your list.
- From the My Library home page, locate the story in the favorites list and click the "Drop" link.
If you have a lot of favorites, they display in the reverse order of when you added them. If you have a lot of stories, you may want to set them in a specific order to help keep track which one you are currently reading.
- Mouse over the "Stories" button in the top navigation bar.
- In the drop-down menu, select "My Library". (Note, if the menu does not drop down for you, click on the main Stories button. On the Stories home page, click on "Manage My Library" from the My Library menu.)
- On the home page of My Library, you will see the list of all your bookmarked favorites.
- Use the ordinal number form in the left hand column of the stories table to set a new order.
- Click "Reorder List" to update.
When you want to see all of the most recent updates at a glance:
- Click the "Go" button at the far right of the drop-down search bar at the top of every page, without selecting anything from the drop-downs
- This will take you to the "Category Search" results page, which defaults to "Show All" since there were no specific choices indicated.
- All stories in the database with Beta, General, and Published status will be displayed, the most recently updated at the top.
Sign up for a story alert.
In the Reader Toolbox, click on the "Add Story Alert" button to put yourself on a story notification list. When an author wants to tell people about an update, she clicks a Story Alert button in her "My Stories" area, types up a quick note, and clicks "Send Alert". This sends an email to everyone on the notice list and writes a copy of the alert to the database so it can be read anytime.
There are a few things to consider before signing up for an alert:
- Finished stories aren't being changed, so the author probably won't send out any notices.
- The author may not want to send alerts.
- The author may not know to send alerts.
If you have a question about whether an author is sending alerts for a particular story, send her an email via the "Email Author" button and ask. Who knows? Maybe you will prompt your favorite author to send out notices on that epic she's working on!
If you enjoyed a story, you can let other potential readers know why you liked it.
- Go to the story overview page or a chapter page and click on "Recommend" in the Reader Toolbox.
- When you see the recommendation form, choose one or more reasons from the list in the box (hold down the CTRL key to select more than one), then click "Add" below the box.
- The reasons you chose will be displayed below the story summary. You name as a recommender will appear and people can click your name to see what other stories you have recommended.
Other ways to recommend a story are:
- Write a comment. Authors love comments!
- Create a playlist and explain in detailed introduction just what is so awesome about this story.
- Post in the author's forum. If the author has a forum, sign up and add a new thread to say what you like about the story. Get a discussion going!
Authors love comments and they are so easy to do! You must be logged in to post comments. HASA does not permit anonymous commenting.
- From the story overview page, look in the sidebar navigation for a box that says "Talk to [author's name]". You'll see the comment form in that box. Comments made from the over view page are always tagged as "General Overview" comments.
- From each story chapter, look in the sidebar navigation for a box that says "Talk to [author's name]". You'll see the comment form in that box. Comments made from a chapter page are always tagged as belonging to that chapter.
- From the Comments page, the comments box appears at the top of the comments for that story. On the comments page, the comment will be tagged with whatever chapter's comments you are viewing.
- If a story does not yet have comments, the first comment must be made from the story, not the Comments page.
- If a chapter does not yet have comments, the first comment must be made from the chapter, not the Comments page.
Often, you want to read a set of stories that have similar characteristics, such as all having a particular character, all by the same author, all poetry or romances, etc. You also want to know when there is something new or updated with that kind of story. If you bookmark a single story or author, or create a playlist, you can track existing stories, but you may not know when they have been updated. You won't know about new stories. What do you do?
You create a saved search.
- Set up a sort filter using the drop down menus in the story sort bar.
- Click Go.
- On the search result page, you will see a form "Save Search to Your Library".
- Type a unique name into text box.
- Click "Save".
- The page refreshes and your search is added to the Saved Searches list.
To get to your saved search:
- Click on the "Stories" button in the top navigation menu.
- When you get to the Stories home page, look in the navigation sidebar for "My Library".
- In My Library, click on the link that says "Saved Searches".
- Your searches appear in alphabetical order in the sidebar menu, ordered alphabetically and stamped with a date when it was created.
- Click a search name to rerun the search.
First of all, you must be a HASA member to post stories on HASA.
If you are a member, please go to My Stuff/My Stories and review the on-screen instructions and FAQs there.
There are three reasons why you might encounter a blank story chapter.
- The author created a story, but has not yet created any chapters.
- There is a chapter, but it is set to "Private" status. This allows an author to keep things out of sight while s/he is working. This often happens with Beta stories.
- There is a chapter, but its chapter number is still set at "0." Usually this is an oversight by the author when adding the chapter.
The only way to know for certain why a chapter does not show is to contact the story author.
There are a few reasons why you might see that page:
- The page existed on the old site but doesn't exist on the new site.
- You are clicking on a link from an email or web page that is malformed.
- The page you are trying to reach is there, but for some reason can't display correctly.
- If you are filling out a form, there was some error in the form processing script and it abandoned the update to avoid corrupting the database.
In these cases, what you need to do is send the URL of the page you are trying to reach to HASA Tech Support via the site contact form. Provide as much information as you can about where you got the URL, what you were looking at when you clicked it, and if you were trying to fill in a form. If you remember, please provide the browser you were using when the error occurred.
- Are you logged in?
If you are not logged in, the site doesn't know who you are and will not allow you to post a comment.
- Have you had a dispute with the author?
Authors can block other members from commenting on a story or on all stories by the author.
- Have you had a dispute with HASA?
If you have been warned about inappropriate comments, you may be blocked from making any comments.
On the Story or Author Alerts page in My Library, there is a list of all stories/authors you've signed up for. In the list is a button "Show Messages" which will display all messages for that story or author.
Sometimes, if you have clicked to the alerts pages from your My Library navigation menu, the page gets "stuck" on that story or author. That's because the URL with the query string keeps resending itself. To stop this behavior:
- Look in the sidebar menu for the links.
- If you are looking at story alerts, click on the "Story Alerts" link.
- If you are looking at author alerts, click on the "Author Alerts" link.
- After the page refreshes, check the URL and make sure the end of it says only:
"?alertswitch=S" for a Story Alert.
"?alertswitch=A" for an Author Alert.
- Click the "Show Messages" button.
Full text searching the thousands of stories we have in our database is beyond the ability of our poor server to support.
Authors, please take advantage of the large story summaries to provide full descriptions of your works, including major characters and your own name to make your works more keyword search friendly.
The general public can read General status stories and Reviewed status stories in the Stories area. Beta status stories only display to logged in members.
There are two exceptions to this rule. Beta stories that are entered in Challenges and are linked in Playlists can also be read by the general public.
Authors, if you want your stories to have the widest reading audience, set them to General status.