Tuesday, April 22, 2014

HASA How-to April 2014: password security

As you no doubt have read, a major vulnerability in SSL (the secure channel used for HTTPS) has been detected recently, affecting many web sites.
We are pleased to confirm that HASA was NOT affected by this vulnerability.

However, this is a good time to review your password security. Good password security practices include:

  • Using a password manager, such as for instance LastPass
  • Change passwords every six months to a year
  • Never reuse passwords
  • Make sure passwords are at least 10 characters in length, include upper and lower case letters, have numbers and (if the site allows it) use non-alphanumeric characters.

At the very least:

  • Do NOT use your Facebook password on other sites. You can use an integrated login (if you are told "Log in with your Facebook account") because the other site is handing the information back to Facebook, no storing it locally, but don't reuse that password anywhere. Change it at least very six months - set a reminder on your calendar.
  • Use different passwords for each financial site you use (your bank, PayPal, credit card site, etc.)
  • Password protect your phone!
  • Let XKCD show you how to construct a super-secure password that is easy to remember

Safe browsing!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

HASA news - Birthdays, Challenges, Stories

April Birthdays
Is your birthday in April, and would you like a drabble about your favourite character or topic? You can request it here.

Not sure what the birthday cards are about? Have a look at some stories written for previous requests.

Challenges
The Listicle Challenge, which started on March 25 to celebrate VmE Sauron Day, will run until the end of the month. Find all the details here.

Just as Challenges come from Prospective Challenges, Prospective Challenges come from Nuzgûl, and Nuzgûl need attention to grow from tiny ideas into big stories. Step into the Nuzgûl hutch. The bunnies don't bite (much). And who knows what ideas you may come out with?

March Stories
All writers love feedback. It is the lembas and miruvor that sustains us as we write our story, and leaving a few words about a story you read is always a nice thing to do, whether the story is new or old.

Every fifteen minutes HASA highlights a story chosen at random from the Reviewed and General stories in the archive. Read the currently featured story on our front page.

Many talented writers are publishing every day. In March:

---25 General Stories were published or updated.
---no Beta Stories were updated.
(Please note, you need to be logged in to view beta stories.)

Thank you for reading and writing at HASA. Enjoy!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Looking for Subscribers and Donations

For over ten years HASA has been providing JRRT fanfiction for all genres, characters, ratings & story lengths. We get hundreds of readers a day, making HASA a great place for readers and writers. Subscribers would be the best way to keep HASA going.
Currently, our balance remains almost 6 months behind for hosting costs. :(

HASA is ad-free and fee-free, and we do not sell your contact information to marketers. HASA depends on donations from members and readers, both one-time gifts and subscriptions. It would be great if we could get some more donations and subscription to help get us closer to positive.
If only a small percentage of our members and readers donated every year or got a monthly subscription we would be in better shape. If we had more subscribers it would be easier to keep current.
Our PayPal account has three ways to donate:
• Monthly subscriptions - set up a monthly recurring donation in amounts from $5 to $25 dollars.
• Yearly subscriptions - set up a recurring annual donation in amounts from $15 to $50 dollars.
• One-off donations of any amount.

If you're a little short on spare change at the moment, donations of time are always appreciated. There's an archive full of stories just waiting for comments, authors who would love an email complimenting them on their work, challenges that need entries, playlists that need to be created, research that needs doing and forums begging for discussions. If you are an author, please consider donating a new story.

Thanks for enjoying HASA!

Monday, March 17, 2014

HASA How-tos - March 2014

How do I...

...add an item to the Research Cabinet?

The quickest way to get started with the Research Cabinet is to add a few items to it. It's as easy as finding an item to add and clicking a button!

  1. Log in to HASA.
  2. Go to the Resources section of the site.
  3. Browse for a Research Library item you would like to add to your cabinet. The items you can add are:
    a. Timeline Events
    b. Character Bios
    c. Places
    d. Things
    e. Full Text Searches (Note - you have to save a search before you can add it to your Cabinet)
  4. Once you have found the Library item you want to add to you Research Cabinet, look for the right-hand menu box labeled "Research Cabinet".
  5. In the Research Cabinet box, click the "Add this [item] to research cabinet".
  6. The page refreshes and the item is added to your cabinet.

At this point, you can leave the item loose in the Cabinet, add it to a Notebook, and/or create a Research Note to go with it; and we will look at how to do that in the next few months. The great thing about the research cabinet is that you can organise your information so that it makes sense to you.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

HASA news - Birthdays, Challenges, Stories

March Birthdays
Is your birthday in March, and would you like a drabble about your favourite character or topic? You can request it here.

Not sure what the birthday cards are about? Have a look at some stories written for previous requests.

Challenges

Just as Challenges come from Prospective Challenges, Prospective Challenges come from Nuzgûl, and Nuzgûl need attention to grow from tiny ideas into big stories. Step into the Nuzgûl hutch. The bunnies don't bite (much). And who knows what ideas you may come out with?

February Stories
All writers love feedback. It is the lembas and miruvor that sustains us as we write our story, and leaving a few words about a story you read is always a nice thing to do, whether the story is new or old.

Every fifteen minutes HASA highlights a story chosen at random from the Reviewed and General stories in the archive. Read the currently featured story on our front page.

Many talented writers are publishing every day. In February:

---28 General Stories were published or updated.
---1 Beta Stories was updated.
(Please note, you need to be logged in to view beta stories.)

Thank you for reading and writing at HASA. Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Looking for Subscribers and Donations


For over ten years HASA has been providing JRRT fanfiction for all genres, characters, ratings & story lengths. We get hundreds of readers a day, making HASA a great place for readers and writers. Subscribers would be the best way to keep HASA going.

Currently, our balance is over $600 negative, which is over four months behind for hosting costs. :(

HASA is ad-free and fee-free, and we do not sell your contact information to marketers. HASA depends on donations from members and readers, both one-time gifts and subscriptions. The February hosting will be due within the next few days; it would be great if we could get some more donations and subscription to help get us closer to positive.

If only a small percentage of our members and readers donated every year or got a monthly subscription we would be in better shape. If we had more subscribers it would be easier to keep current.

Our PayPal account has three ways to donate:
• Monthly subscriptions - set up a monthly recurring donation in amounts from $5 to $25 dollars.
• Yearly subscriptions - set up a recurring annual donation in amounts from $15 to $50 dollars.
• One-off donations of any amount.


If you're a little short on spare change at the moment, donations of time are always appreciated. There's an archive full of stories just waiting for comments, authors who would love an email complimenting them on their work, challenges that need entries, playlists that need to be created, research that needs doing and forums begging for discussions. If you are an author, please consider donating a new story.

Thanks for enjoying HASA!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

HASA How to - February 2014

How do I...

...contribute to Resources?

Obviously, the Resources area provides resources to writers, but it is also a great place to look around in for a non-author who is looking for information about characters or places.

The core of Resources is the Research Library, which contains many facts and citations from the Ardaverse. There are detailed articles on people, places, things and the events that tie them together. There is also a URL library linking to sites of interest to the JRRT fandom. There are research articles and critical essays written by our members, and a discussion forum on wide ranging topics.

How do I contribute data to Resources?

Timeline events, Character Bios, Places and Things can always use entries. If you would like to enter data, let us know in the Resources Forum.

How do I contribute a Research Article?

Be sure you are logged in to the site before you begin.

  1. Double check your story - Is it spell checked? Are all the chapters set to "Published" status and do they all have chapter numbers set to something besides "0"? Is the story set to General or Reviewed status?
  2. Mouse over the Resources button in the main navigation bar and select "Articles & Essays" from the drop-down menu.
  3. On the main A & E page, look in the side bar for the box "Articles & Essays Search". At the bottom of that box you should see a link "Add your work to the Research Library here."
  4. Click and go to the add page.
  5. There will be a form with a drop-down list of your stories that have been categorized as either Research Articles or Critical Essays, and with a multi-select box of research topics.
  6. Choose your story and select topics which apply to the work.
  7. Click "Add".

If you have already added stories, you will also see them on that page. If you want to change topics for any of them, click the "Edit Story Topics" button.

How do I add a link to the URL Library?

  1. Be sure you are logged in - only members can contribute links.
  2. Go to the URL Library in Resources.
  3. Find the "URL Categories" box in the navigation column.
  4. In the box below the form will be a link to add a URL.
  5. In the URL form, fill in:
    • the URL address (be sure to add the http:// part!)
    • the web page name
    • the URL category for the site
    • a brief summary
  6. The summary must be under 250 characters long (this includes blank spaces), and any Adult content should be indicated.
  7. Click on the "Add URL" button.

Your URL will be added in draft status and the Resource Manager will be notified there is a URL waiting for review.

I see an entry that is not accurate

Accuracy is crucial as authors will use the information here in their stories. Entries are spot checked, but errors can creep in, so please help us correct anything inaccurate that you see. To point out a place for correction, email the Resources managers or post in the Resources forum.

Forums

Another way to contribute to the Resources section is by taking part in the Forums

Where can I ask about specific subjects in Forums?

Some particular discussions for specific subjects:

  • English Grammar Discussion - the place to check the correct way to say what you want.
  • Geography and Maps - ask those place related questions here.
  • HoME Reference Requests - Members who own the History of Middle-earth series will take requests to find mentions of a character, place, thing or event.
  • Languages in Arda - some of our members who are familiar with Sindarin, Quenya, Adunaic or Old English keep an eye on this one and will respond to requests.
  • Research Questions - the grand-daddy question thread. Any question is fair game, cooking to legal issues.
  • Writer's aids - anything to do with writing.

These are some of the larger topics, but there are other threads and subjects as well.

There is no discussion for the subject I'm interested in. Should I start one?

Certainly, and starting one is extremely easy to do.

  1. Go to the appropriate discussion.
  2. If you don't see your subject, click 'Post New Topic' to start a topic.
  3. If there is no appropriate discussion, go back up to the Resource Folder, and click 'Add Discussion.'
  4. After the Discussion is created, click 'Post New Topic'.

That's all there is to it.

If there is any topic you'd like to see in the how-to, please let us know!