Article Requirements
Written 19 August 1999
Minor Update 8 July 2006 (in orange)

Introduction and legal stuff

All articles remain the property of the submitter. Modeling Madness does not and will not require any proprietary use of your work. Those reviews sent to Modeling Madness will be placed in the archives for all to use. Modeling Madness reserves the right to use submitted articles in future endeavors such as CD/DVDs or other media. If used, these will help pay for the cost of  operating the site. The reviewer will be given a copy if requested. Failure to read this section does not invalidate any part of these statements.

I occasionally get requests for use of reviews in newsletters of non-profit organizations such as modeling clubs. While I give permission to use reviews I have written freely, I do not do the same for other contributors. If you have no qualms about letting non-profit groups use your reviews, please let me know and I'll add you to the list of those who have already given permission.

For those of you wishing to send in articles, I welcome them and will get them up in as short a time as possible. The amount of time it takes depends on how many are ahead of you in the queue. For previews (looks in the box), go to the bottom of the page. I can always use decal, book and accessory reviews as well. For those, all that is needed is the article and one photo of the item or book cover (decals need a scan of the sheet and cover). Here is a checklist of what is required for the various review articles. Do us both a favor and actually read them. You'd be surprised at the number of people who don't seem to bother.

The Article

Send all articles to svanaken61@gmail.com This is a NEW e-mail as the old one is having issues and will no longer be used. 

Images

Reviews without images will not be published.  

Between 10-15 images is a goodly number, depending on the length of your article. I need a minimum of TEN (10) overall images, taken from all sides of the model. This is because I alternate between left and right side views as the article progresses.

Images should be in .jpg format and and then adjusted down to a size of approximately 900 - 1000 pixels across.

Do not compress the image files any greater than 15% as it really screws up the images.

Please do not sharpen or otherwise alter the image. I'll do all that when I get it.

If you wish to crop it prior to sending, then that is fine as long as it doesn't make the image too small.

Photo manipulation software cannot fix out of focus or poorly exposed images. If your images are like this, do us both a favor and retake the shots.

Images need to be sent separately from the article.

Send articles to svanaken61@gmail.com. Note that this is different from previous as the old e-mail has been causing real problems.

*Follow this link to see what I look for in photos.*

Standard Format
The number of paragraphs listed after each of the main areas is the 
 minimum that I have found will effectively do the job. You can expand on it if you wish. 

For the Stats Block:
This info needs to be included with each review (if applicable)

Kit:

Kit #

Price:

Decals:

Reviewer:

Notes:

For the rest of the article:

History: (Some background on the kit being reviewed) - 2 paragraphs

The Kit: (What the kit is like in the box, decal options and if any resin, metal bits included) - 2 paragraphs

Construction: (As much detail as possible on the construction of the kit. M2 kit reviews are used by readers to help them while building the kit. It is not much help to say 'kit went together well'. - 3 paragraphs

Painting and Markings: (What colors you used by what paint maker and what type (enamel, acrylic). Also what markings you used. Did you paint them on or use aftermarket decals) - 2 paragraphs

Conclusion: (How did you feel about the kit when done. Would you recommend it to anyone. What skill level would be appropriate) - 1 paragraph

References: (This is for your Historical background or camouflage scheme. Where can others go to duplicate any research you did on the subject.) Do us both a favor and only list those books you actually used when doing the model. I get articles with forty books listed and I know darn well the author didn't use them all when researching the model!

You need to realize when writing an article that this may well be the first article a reader has seen. While some things may seem redundant to you, they are not to others so include as much information on the actual construction and painting of the kit as you can. A short article or one that skips construction information is useless to anyone who is trying to duplicate your work or wants to know about any problem areas. This is not a paper publication, so there is no need to be brief about what you did.

Do's and Don'ts

Do fully read the requirements section.

Do send in a complete article in .doc or similar format.

Do send in quality photos.

Do take pictures of both sides of the model from different angles and elevations.

Do send pictures separately from the article.

Do match the number of images with the length of the article (i.e. don't send in just five images with four pages of article or twenty-five images for a two page article).

Don't send in poor images as I can't use them and you are wasting both of our times with them.

Don't send in a complete article already formatted with images in Word.

A FINAL NOTE: I download articles just prior to publishing them so I don't lose them. That being the case, it may well be a week or more before I acknowledge your article, so be patient.

Previews

A preview is basically the same as a review except that you will only use the History, Kit and (perhaps) References sections. Stats box info is the same. For images, what is needed is..

1. one (1) image of all the sprues

2. one (1) image of the box top or end panel and

3. another (1) of the decal sheet. 

For the sprues, there is no need to send in multiple scans as it only increases my workload to put them into a single image and I won't do it. Simply place all the bits on a solid background and take a single photo. You can send in a single detail shot of some part if you feel you need to show what it is like or perhaps a shot of an etched fret. What I'm saying is that if you send in more than 4 images for a preview, you've probably sent in too many.

When describing the kit, note such things as level of detail, optional bits and the such. You can comment on test fits if you wish, but it is not required.

Book, Decal and Accessory Reviews

For a book review, a scan of the cover and perhaps a representative page are all that is needed. Please include stats like format, # of pages and ISBN

For a decal review, a scan of the profiles and the sheets are needed.

For Accessory or detail set reviews, I only need a single shot of the parts involved.

As with other articles, a raw .doc file with no images, table, bullets or other 'stuff' in it. Send images separately

M2-Provided Kit Build Requirements

In addition to the requirements for the write-up, if you are chosen to build a kit provided by M2, there are additional requirements.

  1. I'd like the review within 8 weeks of your receipt of the kit. If it takes longer, I understand, but consider 2 months the norm.
  2. The review can be published in no other place (either electronic or paper). Exceptions are publishing in your personal, non-commercial website, or club newsletter once it has been published in Modeling Madness.
  3. You get to keep the review kit and may enter it in contests (I get asked this all the time).
  4. If you receive the kit and, for what ever reason, are not going to build it, please return it so someone else can have the opportunity. If you don't return the kit or submit a review, you will not be considered for further opportunities to build review kits.

All of the above material is to help answer any questions you have about doing a review and what is expected out of one.  As always, if you have any questions, contact me.

Scott Van Aken