Sarah Doughty

author / artist / learner / reader

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The Big Bad Blog

Project Flow:

  • Published to blog & Promote blog - day of publication - Me 
  • Content approved & post scheduled - 1 day to publication - Me 
  • Final revision  & finalize design assets with post - 2 days to publication - Me (additional time added with larger amount of content) 
  • Proofread - 3 days to publication - Spouse (additional time added with larger amount of content) 
  • Draft submitted for proof - 4 days to publication - Me 
  • Design assets delivered for editing - AT LEAST 7 days to publication - Me (will do myself or spouse, depending on asset) 
  • Preplanning & Content Calendar established - at least 14 days to publication - Me

Personnel:

I will act as Content Strategist. I will do most copywriting, but just in case I will set up a style guide for reference if I have someone help or write a post. I can manage the design, but technicals I'll need some help with. I can edit photos fine, but if it comes to creating animation, or videos, I have no experience with these. I'm also not very versed in web design, so I'm going to have someone manage this part of my blog as well. I will have a proofreader assist with posts. Since I'm the sole runner of the blog, I will act as the approver.

Posting Frequency:

2 per week at least, 1 per month at least 

My art: art - once per week, tutorials - at least 1 per month

Publishing Channels:

Buffer will handle posting to Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn (I haven't yet decided if I want a LinkedIn profile, but if I choose to use it, I'll add it to the schedule). 

There doesn't appear to be a Buffer equivalent for Instagram, Pinterest, and Tumblr. Tumblr allows things to be scheduled in advance, so I could always plan to post to Instagram and Pinterest after the Tumblr publication (this will be most useful with my art).

Draft a pitch:

Hi Everyone! 

When I first started working on Surface Pattern designing with Adobe Illustrator, I was lost. Over the years, I've learned some tricks, most of which came from your Illustrator Guide blog. 

Are you interested in a guest post that I have drafted, titled "Top Tips for Surface Pattern Design in Adobe Illustrator". I cover the best ways of solving the most common issues when doing Surface Pattern Design. 

Please let me know if the post would be interesting for you. 

If you need a reference on my writing style, see my most recent post here.  

Thanks, 

Sarah

Sources:

  • StumbleUpon.com - This is something that's going to take a little time to figure out if it'll be extremely useful for my blog. I like the quotes, gave me an idea for writing prompts. We'll see how far it gets me. Upon further review, this is QUITE good for sourcing ideas for my content pillars. Will keep exploring. 
  • Chase's Calendar of Events - this will require looking ahead for related content. This will most likely be a backup resource, as there probably won't be too much content related to my blog. 
  • Zite might come in handy as well. But its resources will be fewer and further between than CCE.
  • TUMBLR could also be a random source for information. This could be some music inspiration, a quote, or other source of inspiration that I could use in a blog post or project.

Storing:

  • Evernote - This is pretty basic. It's a place to store ideas obtained from other sources. It's available on all platforms, so it'll be easy to add, search, or browse for content.

Hard sales vs. brand journalism: Fictional blog post and sale

Hard sale:

Have you ever wondered how to create a surface pattern design in Adobe Illustrator? Without knowing your way around the massive software - SO MANY CHOICES! - it's a daunting task to get your project from start to finish.  

My course, Mastering Surface Pattern Design will explain everything you need to know to make perfect surface patterns FAST. Every time.  

Thousands of designers use these tried and true methods to create the best surface patterns over and over again. You can choose to keep working blindly in Illustrator, or you can take my course and find out everything you need to know about Surface Pattern Design. 

For only $59 you can have that knowledge. Click here for the full download of the course from creativeLIVE.com!

Brand Journalism:

For years I've been working hard trying to master Adobe Illustrator for Surface Pattern Design. I've learned some good tricks and some that were utter failures. After all this time, I've truly figured out what works when it comes to navigating Adobe Illustrator to create great Surface Pattern Designs every time.  

I know many people have the same struggles when it comes to finding out the tricks to reach the final product quickly. That's why I've created a course that explains everything from start to finish. I explain what works, what doesn't and why.  

You can find my course at creativeLIVE.com. It's a live course and free to watch but if you want to download the course and all of the resources I used for just $59. I look forward to seeing you there!

My thoughts:

Over the years I've seen my share of both styles. I've never once considered the hard sale. How do I know I'm getting a quality product if I buy? How do I know that what's being said is real? Businesses have caught on to the notion and have been able to manipulate the way they advertise their products into a more believable and practical way. 

Brand journalism is much more convincing. It engages the reader in a conversational way. Rather than forcing a product down someone's throat, the seller is there to help them improve their life in some way.

Brand journalism was exactly how I discovered Skillshare. I follow a blog and the woman who runs it made a post specifically about the courses she was taking and how they're helping her with her life and her job (she's designs fabric and runs her blog and etsy shop full time). So I came to Skillshare's website and looked around for myself. I could see reviews from students who had taken the courses, I could see the quality of the courses that were offered, without actually having to sign up. The best part? I could take almost any course, unlimited amounts at a time, for the same price as a monthly subscription to Netflix. I was sold.

Brand Statement:

Sarah Doughty (The Official Blog) is a passionate, natural, and practical blog focused on providing content about my writing with people who love to read so that I can share my passion with the world.

My art:

Sarah Doughty (The Art Portfolio Blog) is a simple blog focused on providing content about my art with people who like lettering and typography art so that I can share my art with the world.

Content Pillars:

  1. Flash Friday (evergreen)
  2. Writing Tips and Inspiration (evergreen)
  3. Recommended Reading (evergreen)

My art:

  1. Art
  2. Tutorials
  3. Sell

Reasons: (5 supporting reasons)

Share my passion with the world (main)

  1. Publish my own writing
  2. Share my processes, routines, inception of ideas, setbacks, and accomplishments
  3. Discuss events involving writing (such as NaNoWriMo)
  4. Recommended reading
  5. Communicate with readers, answer questions, and grow!

Share my art with the world (main)

  1. Publish my art to portfolio
  2. Share tutorials, thoughts, and ideas
  3. Link to etsy shop or make a store
  4. Allow for potential clients to contact me for commission

Goals:

  1. Publish at least one story from blog in a magazine (print or digital) by the end of the year. 
  2. Publish one collection of my blog fiction to Amazon (for free) by the end of the year. 
  3. Publish at least one novella or book to Amazon by the end of next year.

My art:

  1. Start a series and publish it to etsy before the end of the year. 
  2. Start an etsy shop and sell one piece of art by the end of the year. 
  3. Get my first client commission by the end of next year.

Style:

  • Funny - Cheesy = Natural humor 
  • Creative - Redirection = My own work. No linking elsewhere 
  • Down-to-Earth - Religion/Politics = Avoid touchy subjects 
  • Honest - Personal = Be practical about what I share 
  • Passionate - Selling = Share what I love without forcing people to pay for it

My art: This is pretty basic. Publish the work. Maybe publish some tutorials. This could also include tips on how to be your own artist. Mostly this will work as a portfolio. There could be some overlap between the two blogs, if the content is related to one another.

Audience:

  • Women 
  • Age 18-40 
  • Avid Readers, enjoying a mixture of urban fantasy, romance, and humor 
  • Devices used to access my content: mobiles, tablets, computers/laptops, and kindle e-readers (including devices with the kindle app)

Meet Julie (I'm calling her this, because she looks like the character Julie in Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion). She's a reader. She likes to get lost in the books and stories she reads.  

Entering a whole new universe where anything can happen. She especially loves stories involving vampires, witches, werewolves or other were-animals, zombies, and anything outside our own reality. 

Julie, like most young women, works for a living. She's educated, been to college, and loves to live life to the fullest. Reading is her favorite past time. Bad day? Read a book. Rainy day? Read a book.

My art: This doesn't really have a specific demographic, other than it's for the people who like things like lettering and typography, and individuality.

Reason why I want to blog:

Creative Outlet

  • Place to publish short stories/flash fiction 
  • Write about creative writing/events like NaNoWriMo 
  • Explanations of where I got the idea for a story 
  • Eventually publish collections of short stories/flash fiction as a group to amazon (free) 
  • Eventually publish other writings to amazon, as the exposure grows, plan to add a small fee for these 
  • Expand over time to generate income as a writer 
  • Become a full time writer/artist 
  • A separate place to express my creativity (art) on tumblr 
  • Have a portfolio of art (through tumblr) 
  • Do art projects or a series of related pieces of art 
  • Include some tutorials or explanations (how I made a piece of art) 
  • Set up an Etsy shop or equivalent for selling my art 
  • Eventually take on clients for their own needs

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