Putting your published letters on
If you have had success in getting letters published, you may like to put
them on the internet so that other members of FoE, and other internet users, can
There are two main options here:
- If your local group has its own website, you may post your letters there,
together with any comments you may want to make.
- Otherwise, you may register with one of the websites that provide the
facilities for you to create your own 'blog' (web log) and then you may post
copies of your letters there, with comments as before. Examples of websites
that provide free blogging services are
blogger.com and myspace.com.
A word of caution: do keep copies of all your letters and comments on your
computer (with backup copies). This is because the present arrangements for the
FoE letter-writing scheme are likely to be temporary (while we learn what works
best) and your letters and comments may need to be uploaded to an FoE website in
Making copies of letters for posting on the internet
There are two main options for posting copies of your published letters on
Perhaps the simplest thing to do is to use the original text of your
letter and make changes to it so that the text matches what was finally
published. If the newspaper editor made substantial changes, you may like to
post the original text of your letter as well as the published version.
If you want people to see the letter as it appeared in print, then you
will need to create a scanned copy.
Here is a scanning method that works quite well:
- Set the scanner to scan at 200 dpi. Any less than this and letters will be
hard to read.
- Set the colour depth to greyscale (8 bits) unless the original contains
- In your editing program (Photoshop, Paint Shop Pro etc) adjust the
brightness and contrast of each scanned letter manually for easy reading, or
use automatic contrast enhancement.
- Use the eraser in your editing program to clean up unwanted black marks or
text on the same newspaper page that is not relevant to the given letter or
- Add the name of the newspaper, date of publication and, if you wish, the
page number for the scanned letter or letters. Adding this information with
the editor gives a neater result than writing on the original cutting.
- Export the image to a JPG file with as much compression as possible
without sacrificing too much quality. A compression factor of at least 20 is
If you are posting scanned copies of letters on your website or blog, it is a
good idea to add a note to explain how browsers will show images small at first
but provide a button so that they can be displayed at full size. People who are
not familiar with this feature may otherwise think that the letters are too
small to be read. An example of this kind of note is at the top of