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BLOG CONTENT STYLE GUIDE

Voice and Tone

All content should include a voice and tone that is:

  • Professional
  • Objective
  • Positive
  • Family-friendly

Conversational voice is welcome in any piece that isn’t informational (ex. press release or news story).

All posts must be original and specific to ARC/Parks and Recreation, we do not allow any posts that have been previously published on other platforms.

Categories of Content

Here are the subcategories of ARC blog, and examples of content we accept:

  • Community Centers
    • New class/camp promotion
    • Spotlight of a specific class/camp
  • News and Information
    • Press releases
    • Changes to registration
  • Events
    • Community center events
  • ARC Story
    • Employee/volunteer interviews

We do not accept content that includes hard opinion, politics, or is irrelevant to ARC/Parks and Recreation.

Grammar and Formatting

Titles.

Titles should catch the users attention, appeal to the target audience, and promise to provide value to the reader. Please note that titles may be changed by the editor to meet SEO standards.

Be concise.

Less is more when it comes to word count. Write concise and direct sentences, avoiding any fluff words.

Original – “Students who have some prior experience on the wheel and would like to work on specific projects are welcome.”

Edited– “Students with prior experience are welcome to work on their own projects.”

Break up your paragraphs.

Shorter paragraphs make blog posts easier to read. For example:

Original:

The new design addresses safety and accessibility, and promotes park activities. Many of the existing park elements will be demolished, opening sight lines and improving visibility. The new park will feature an open lawn, plantings, trees, a multi-use plaza with donated art, a loop trail, and a fitness area. The “Explorer Voyage” art piece by Paul Sorey, donated by Friends of Christie Park, celebrates the community’s connection to the Taiwanese Community, James Christie, and University of Washington.

Edited:

The new design addresses safety and accessibility, and promotes park activities. Many of the existing park elements will be demolished, opening sight lines and improving visibility.

The new park will feature an open lawn, plantings, trees, a multi-use plaza with donated art, a loop trail, and a fitness area. The “Explorer Voyage” art piece by Paul Sorey, donated by Friends of Christie Park, celebrates the community’s connection to the Taiwanese Community, James Christie, and University of Washington.

In the edited segment, Paragraph 1 is a summarizing sentence while Paragraph 2 provides more details about that information.

Breaking up the paragraphs when a new thought begins will make your piece easier to read, and readers are less likely to skip over the information if it's not clouded in a wall of text.

Word Count­­

Feature stories: 500 word minimum

What counts as a feature: a longer written piece that is focused on human interest and provides greater detail about an event, place, or person(s). Features offer more creative freedom and can be written for the purposes of entertaining, promoting, educating, and/or informing.

Example: https://parkways.seattle.gov/2019/11/19/%ef%bb%bfannouncing-the-winners-of-seattle-parks-and-recreations-2019-denny-awards-for-outstanding-volunteer-stewardship/

Press releases: 150 word minimum

What counts as a press release: an informational piece that is specific and brief.

Example: https://parkways.seattle.gov/2019/05/06/seattle-parks-and-recreation-repairs-arson-damaged-comfort-station-at-maple-leaf-park/

Multimedia

If your blog post includes multimedia elements, please read the instructions on how to send them.

It is strongly recommend for all multimedia to be original works, no stock photos/videos. We cannot accept any multimedia that includes elements that are:

  • Copyrighted
  • Obscene/vulgar
  • Irrelevant
Photos

Email as attachments in JPEG format. Links to online albums such as Google Drive, Dropbox, Flickr etc; otherwise your photos will not be accepted.

Video 

Provide a YouTube or Vimeo link to be included to your post.

Submission & Timelines

Please submit all blog post drafts, pitches, and inquiries to Julian Baet at [email protected].

Time Sensitive Material

Any story that advertises a dated occurence —  usually an event — requires requests to be made at least one month in advance.

If you are writing a post that is time sensitive, please submit a final draft no later than two weeks before the event/date of occurence.

Evergreen Stories

AKA stories that are not time sensitive (ex: posts about programs that run year-round including enrichment, preschool, and lifelong recreation). Please allow 2-3 weeks for your requests to be fulfilled.


The ARC blog strives to retain the original voice, tone, and resonance of the author. All content that is submitted will be subject to minor edits as deemed necessary by the editor.