We love guest authors on CSS-Tricks! It's always a win-win-win. It's good for the site, it's good for the readers, and it's good for you. We're a publication and thus live on content. Our readers have a voracious appetite for more information and perspectives. Guest posting can be an outlet for your thoughts and promotion for you.
We prefer if the reason you are writing is because you have something you very much want to share. You have a deep knowledge on this topic. You are excited about it. You're ready to tell people about it.
If that's all true, then exactly what you write about can be within a wide range of topics. Essentially "anything web". This site is mostly about front-end web design and development (it is certainly broader than just CSS), but we're not opposed to anything as long as it's related to the web at least somewhat.
If you love tech writing, but would like the idea of having an assignment to write about, we have some topics we'd love to commission, and if none of those fit, just get in touch and we can talk about it.
The audience of CSS-Tricks is front-end web designers and developers of all skill levels. We welcome guest posts at any skill level. We can help set the expectations for the article early in the article itself.
- Beginner articles have the highest bar. Topical 101 articles are easy to find and have a tendency to be not-so-great. We'd rather not add to that, but instead, if we do a beginner article, make it extremely good.
- Advanced articles are great, so long as they are approachable by someone at the intermediate level trying to level up. That means a high level of clarity, step-by-step instructions, lots of reference material, working/annotated demos, that kind of thing.
Friendly. Authoritative. Welcoming. We're all in this together. Flexible (nondogmatic about ideas). Thankful.
We pay! But there are two approaches to this.
One is that we straight up just pay you for your time and effort to write an article. We have a budget. It will vary from article to article based on some factors including the amount of time and research needed.
Two is that the post is intended to promote something of yours. In that case, no money changes hands. It is different from a sponsored post in that you aren't just straight up pitching your product or service, you're writing a useful article about the web, it just so happens to be something that the promotion you'll get from this article is valuable. It can't be overly promotional, but it can be like "I also wrote a book on this topic, check it out!" or "I'm writing about this because of my experience in building this product."
Tobias Günther wrote about a common problem in Git, a problem he's solved pretty well in building his own app Tower.
Authors have their own dedicated page on the site. For example, Scott Fennell.
We don't mind what tool you choose to write in. If you have strongly preferred writing tool or format (Google Docs, Markdown, whatever), please feel free to use that. If you don't have a strong preference, we've been using Draft as it's an excellent writing environment and accommodates feedback and group editing.
We'll handle the final formatting into the HTML that we publish in.
Always good: a healthy amount of images, code examples, and demos.
It goes a little something like:
- We start talking
- You pitch the concept
- We approve that
- You write an outline or something outline-like
- We approve that
- You write the article
- We edit it
- It gets posted
Like any process, it's malleable.
Article We'd Love To Commission
Remember guest posts can be about just about anything web-related that you're very interested in. But just in case you like working on assignment:
- MailChimp's Form Validation Script is 140 KB. (see) It includes all of jQuery. I bet it could be rewitten with just as much support and functionality a lot smaller and that could really help the web. That would make an interesting article for sure!
- Autopsy of an advertising tracking script - Are you up for finding a real live third-party script out there in the wild and dissecting it line by line to figure out all the (potentially scary) stuff it's doing?
- Use Cases for Parent Selectors - One of the more hotly requested features in CSS. It seems like when you need it, you really wish it existed, but it's hard to remember exact use cases. Here's a few leads: 1, 2. Got 10?
- Using DevTools as a Development Environment - Do you use the Sources tab to actually write code that saves back to disk? Wanna show us your workflow?
- Do you know somebody wildly interesting? - Perhaps you could get an exclusive interview where we ask titillating questions and reveal shocking truths.
- Do you get a lot out of HTML preprocessing? - Perhaps you're all about static site generation and use something like Nunjucks macros to build out your patterns. How does that work?
- How To Create Your Own URL Protocol - We'd love to see someone dig into that. You know, like myapp:// instead of http:// or mailto://. Cool real word example: Panic's product registration emails have links that open right in their software! iTunes has them too. Here's some leads.
- How about building a progressive web app from scratch?
- You could introduce us to the web audio API.
Reach out and let's do this.