The Art of Doing Stuff is GROWING.
Read about the changes coming up!

 

Everyone calm down.  They’re good changes. It’s not like becoming a woman in the middle of gym class or going gluten free.

I started The Art of Doing Stuff 4 years ago knowing that blogging had everything I loved.  Writing, photography (which I had NO idea how to do, but was always curious about), a bit of business and the ability to work at 2 a.m. if I wanted.  As it turns out, I did a lot of blogging at 2 a.m., not always because that’s what I wanted.

Blogging is easily the hardest, most time consuming job I’ve ever had, and that’s coming from a woman who was a television host for over 15 years.  I know. Television doesn’t sound all that strenuous, but when you’re shooting, work days are generally between 15 and 18 hours long, for weeks on end, plus you’re the only one on set with the added pressure of having to have good hair the whole time.

 

But blogging is also the most FUN.  At this point I can’t imagine doing anything else.  So it’s with great sadness I tell you that The Art of Doing Stuff is coming to an end.

NO IT’S NOT!!! JUST KIDDING!

See, I told you that because now whatever I tell you will seem like a relief!    The only problem is there’s a slight chance  you choked on your coffee and coughed so hard an eyeball popped out.  So now you hate me.  Sorry ’bout that.

There are a few changes coming up for my website.  Nothing earth shattering, but there are enough changes coming that I figured I should let you in on them so you aren’t alarmed or startled when they come about.

site-redesign

Something I’m working on right now is a complete redesign of my website.   Most blogs that are as old as mine are on their 2nd or 3rd redesign.  I, on the other hand, am still on my first design, which was chicken scratched with crayons on to the back of a soup can label.  I generally like the design of my site but I’m finding that it isn’t structured in such a way to encourage people to really click around and read other posts.  And if you’re a blogger, that’s kind of essential.

I also would like a newer look.  Maybe incorporate the word SASSAFRASS!!!   and a dancing frog.

And finally everything, every single one of my posts needs to be recategorized.  When I first started this site I had no idea what my categories should be because I only had a general idea of what I was going to be writing about.  For instance, when I started this site I didn’t have chickens so there isn’t a category for chickens.  My goal is to have 5 categories at the top of my site with a drop down menu, with sub categories.  So if you’re looking for a recipe, you can click on “Recipes”, then the drop down menu will give you the choice between soups, salads, doughs, etc.

I’m only in the beginning stages of redesigning my site (O.K. all I’ve really done is browse around other sites seeing what I like while eating potato chips), so it’ll be quite a while before you see the new look.

 

the-book

A few months ago I was approached by a literary agent from Brooklyn.  I’ve been approached by publishers about writing a book before could never bring myself to commit to it.  Maria, my agent, has convinced me that it can be done.  She’s with a very reputable agency and has assured me she’ll help me every step of the way.

So.  I’m writing a book.

At least I’ve committed to the possibility of writing a book.  I’m only at the proposal writing stage, which means no one has even agreed to publish my book yet, but Maria and I are both fairly confident someone will.  Unless of course they read this post, which is turning out to be incredibly boring and dry and not something I’d be even remotely interested in if I was a book publisher.  They’d be smarter to read my post on The Diva Cup.

 

video-craft-night

Anyone who’s a regular reader knows I gave a week long, live, video course on Turning Your Blog into a Business (Which is now available for you to download!).  I had SO much fun doing that course.  LOVED it!   If blogging is my dream job, TEACHING about blogging through my old friend video, is my wet dream job.

The video course let me e-meet a lot of you, actually interact a bit with you, teach, entertain and return to my roots as a television  host.

So, I’m working together with Cassie, the same girl who I worked with on the blogging course, to bring you Video Craft Night!

The goal for Video Craft Night is to have a live, video craft night with you once a month.  We’ll all hang around in my kitchen doing either one of my famous Halloween crafts, or a great recipe, or maybe try out something I’ve seen on Pinterest  and liked!  Before the course starts you’ll be emailed a list of all the ingredients or materials you’ll need.  It’ll be something that can be done in the half hour or hour long the class is.

We’re still working on it, but what I’d really like is to be able to see you as well as you seeing me.  So if you’re doing something right or wrong I can tell you.  Of course if you don’t want to be live on video you don’t have to be.

If there’s a project I’ve done you’d love to have as one of our craft nights let me know!  The first craft night will be a bit of a crap shoot, lol, so there will be a very, VERY low introductory price because well … it might be a shit show.  Which has all kinds of fun potential as well.

 

newsletter

Between the site redesign, writing the book proposal and the video courses I’m hoping I’ll still have time for my next goal for The Art of Doing Stuff, which is putting out my weekly newsletter on a weekly basis as opposed to the once a season basis I’m currently struggling with.

I really like doing the newsletter because I include some stuff that’s happening around here that I don’t put on the blog.  Little fun things like what I’m reading, watching, wanting and listening to.  Plus I remind you about some of the best posts from the past week or two in case you missed them.

 

 

3-posts

And finally, The Art of Doing Stuff will be going down to 3 posts a week instead of 5.  They will be every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Why 3 and not 5?  The biggest reason is so I can do a better job on each post.

As it turns out, I’ve recently learned that none of the other blogs my size post 5 days a week.  They post 3 days a week and promote their sites and do all the other work they need to do on the remaining days.  Because doing 5 posts a week would be impossible for any but the most sleep deprived of individuals.  Did I mention I gave up foods that require chewing about a year ago?

And if the larger blogs DO post  5 days a week they either have contributors, assistants or more than one person working on them. Or a hefty supply of speedballs.

I’d rather do fewer posts  and be prouder of them.  You know, spend more than half an hour writing them for instance.  A girl’s never gonna win a Oscar with a post that’s written in half an hour.  That’s my excuse for not winning an Oscar anyway.

Just writing the posts takes up every hour of every waking day.  I never get weekends off, and rarely even get a day off every couple of weeks.  A lot of times I’ll go months without a day off.  Ask my family.  They’ll confirm it.  I don’t really mind because I love my job, but I need a bit of breathing space to come up with great ideas for the site.

Also, one of the most important things about having a blog is PROMOTING it.  Just ask the people who took my course. A whole class was spent on the importance of promoting your site.  If you aren’t promoting your blog constantly, people won’t be reading it.  When I first started The Art of Doing Stuff I spent at least 2 days a week and most nights finding ways to promote my blog and get the word out.  I haven’t had time to do that for a couple of years now, because as the site grew I ended up with more responsibilities. Things like dealing with advertisers, and getting sponsorships.  The blog has given me many writing opportunities for magazines and companies like Canadian Living and Lee Valley that also take time.

So from here on in, The Art of Doing Stuff will only be coming to your inbox 3 times a week instead of 5, but you’ll also be getting the newsletter once a week (eventually) and you have video courses and a real live BOOK to look forward to!  I’ve really overused the exclamation point in this post but I’m trying to work everyone into an “ISN’T THIS FUN!!!” frenzy.

 

So those are the changes that will be coming up in the next few months (except posting 3 days a week which takes effect immediately).  It’s all in an effort to help The Art of Doing Stuff grow and become better.  It will give me time to expand the site and give me more time to focus on the business of it as well as the creative part.

You don’t have to do a thing differently.  Except maybe sign up for my courses if you wanna. And buy my book.  And read my newsletter.  O.K. this is really going to be a bit of an ordeal for you now that I think about it.

Not really.

Just keep doing your part.  And my readers you do have a part.  I’ve heard over and over again from advisors, experts and consultants that The Art of Doing Stuff has the most engaged readers they’ve ever come across.  You’re invested in my little site and I understand that. So I’m not changing things too radically.  Not radically at all, really.

So continue to comment, read, Pin and Like my posts the way you always have.  Your job stays the same. (You can follow me on Pinterest here)

That is all.  Don’t forget to let me know what sort of inexpensive video courses you’d be interested in.  They’d range between let’s say … $10 and $50 depending on how many nights they are.  Let the commenting begin!  (this oughtta be good, lol)

 

signature2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 




184 Comments

  1. Luanne says:

    So – 2 years later – how are you feeling about the changes? I’m loving the ‘even more polished’ look of things around here.

    At the first it seemed like you might have been a little uncomfortable pulling back – how did it work out from your end? Are you loving what you do even more?

  2. Kelli says:

    SO SO SO excited for you Karen! So many great things coming your way, you really are a Super Woman! (and just super, to boot). WHEN you get that book deal, please come to Dallas, TX for a signing, would love to meet you. But you might not want to come between June and September. Just sayin. :)

    Will deffo be putting your book at the top of my Christmas wish list for next year…or whenever it comes out! :)

  3. Angela Recker says:

    I am in for the craft nite! Hopefully, I can get my webcam working by then too! I LOVE all the changes you mentioned. As for 3 posts/week, I could never figure out how you managed to do the 5 you were doing & still make them so informative, entertaining & fun! Three works for me!

  4. Beth W says:

    Don’t get me wrong, I love the 3 posts a week from you as yes, without being stretched so thin, I think the beefy quality of each has gone up . . . BUT, my Tuesday and Thursday morning are desperately bland now and I’m afraid I might have to subscribe to some other daily type blog in addition to yours, or at least someone who does Tues/Thurs and won’t mind if I delete their M/W/F.

    How about doing a guest post Tuesday and then a throwback post (one of your older ones that some folk haven’t seen) on Thursdays? I know it’s selfish to ask, but I did really enjoy reading about that lady who lives in a bus (at least I think it was a bus) and the singers. I’m sure a really well crafted form with the questions and then a limit on the amount of characters thereafter (to avoid rambling as I’ve done already in this post) would work out. Adding the pics would be a pain though… Perhaps that isn’t a solution at all.

    Just wanted to say – Tuesdays and Thursdays suck a little more now without my dose of humour and witty insight… they’re merely the reminder that Monday is done but there’s 4 more to go, or that Friday still isn’t actually palpable yet.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Beth – Yeah, no … that’s not a solution, lol. I’m impressed you worked that out yourself! But don’t worry. You’ll get used to it. I don’t love it either, but I’m getting used to it.~ karen!

  5. Paula says:

    I’m excited about the book. Who will take care of the chickens when you are on book tour? Also when you are on the book tour be sure to come to Kansas City. We’ll take you to dinner.

    All the changes sound fine to me.

  6. Marti says:

    I missed this post when it went up, I guess.

    So…where’s the dancing frog?

  7. ananda says:

    dear karen, i am new to your blog but love it already! your style is just awesome!!! i am looking forward to taking your classes! i would love to learn more about how you manage your time – there’s so much to do from creating great content ( like a full time job already) , promoting( i chose to ignore but know i shouldn’t) , to writing a book and teaching classes (my wet dream job one day too! ) … would love to learn to be productive like you!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Ananda! Welcome to my site. :) I took a quick look at your site and it looks like you’re doing great without me! Your site looks really good. SO happy to see you also built a cob oven. One of the best things I ever did. :) ~ karen!

  8. Dana says:

    Karen, since you’re an early Christmas shopper and you’re revamping things, I thought it would be a good time to throw this request out there, please consider another post of great Etsy stores you recommend. Thanks for all your hard work, you’re a hoot!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Dana! And not to worry I’ll be doing lots of Christmas idea posts including an Etsy guide. Seriously … I LOVE Etsy for Christmas presents. It’s fantastic! ~ karen

  9. Megan says:

    Please, please, please DON’T go the “pictures only” post route! I’d rather have no post at all than one merely of artfully arranged figs. Love the photos, but love the text much much more!

  10. tajicat says:

    All sounds good! :)

  11. Caroline says:

    All I have to say is I don’t know if I can handle “better, funnier” posts! There is enough spewed coffee inbedded in my laptop keyboard as it is! I am, however, looking forward to craft night! Love that idea!

  12. Adrienne in Atlanta says:

    I second Edith’s request (especially those particular questions)!

    Wholeheartedly support your galvanization of your craft. Can’t say I don’t miss the other posts, but it’s all for the greater purpose, so stand your ground, girl. ;)

    A book will be awesome, and yes, that cover needs to be worthy of your keen eye for design. No Martha Stewart Entertaining fussy covers, please. ;)

  13. magali says:

    I *love* the idea of craft night! !
    I have a question about your newsletter. Would it be possible in the redesign of your site to only subscribe to the newsletter? I don’t subscribe to any of the blogs I read, I like going to them directly. For me, getting an email a day that I don’t open and rarely getting a newsletter is a little annoying. I am subscribed to two other blog newsletters without getting their daily posts and I enjoy that. Thanks for considering it :)

  14. Jean says:

    Sounds like good changes, all. I recently quit reading a blog that posts 7 days because it is quality over quantity. Your posts are always a-1. Would making a pie crust count as a craft video?

    • Karen says:

      It would actually! (Depending on how it goes) I don’t want to limit it to crafts. Could be cooking … crafting … learning a magic trick, lol. Whatever. :) ~ karen!

  15. judy says:

    Being from a totally different Life experience than probably most of your readers I follow Blogs for current day Wit and Wisdom and as little Drivel as possible. I have read a little (very little) of the weird Blogs that just serve up Hate, hot and greasy and meant to be swallowed whole and it really makes me Wonder. The Blogs I enjoy the most have responders as smart and interesting as the Blogger. I read most of the comments and my Faith in the Future and the Basic goodness of the Human Species is restored.

  16. Lis says:

    Besides the rocking creativity and the hysterically funny writing, I love that you have built a virtual and yet real Community around your blog. The back and forth exchanges are great. Really not something other ‘design and stuff’blogs can claim.
    For your future video courses, please do ‘stuff’ – you know, where we get to see how you use/learn/use ourselves real tools, not just emery glue and glitter – everyone knows how to use those. The axe, saws, not so much. And – oh, please include Pink tool belt too, besides Betty!
    A guest post every now and then on your off days might tide us over. But choose wisely! Good luck!

  17. Mel says:

    You entertain me with your humour and fantastic writing, you inspire me to do stuff I may not have necessarily tried before and you introduce me to some great products and ideas. Thank you. I too am not great with change, but it looks as though you have thought them through and I wish you the best transition and I look forward to 2.0. And I am really looking forward to a book.

  18. Kim Kline says:

    It all sounds great, Karen! Looking forward to all if the great new developments. Love being among your readership.
    Kim

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The Art of Doing Stuff