reading

A to Z Challenge Reflection Post

 This is the first time I’ve completed the A to Z challenge. I’ve tried twice before and missed half the letters. Third time’s the charm.

The difference this time is that I was a little more focused, instead of doing random posts about the first thing that came to mind. I still wasn’t very organized. Lots of people planned the whole months’ worth of posts in advance; some people planned a week in advance.

Me? I was lucky if I managed to write a post the night before. I would have been a lot less stressed if I’d managed to write more in advance.

But I managed. Some posts may have been a stretch, but I squeezed all the letters into a post related to the theme.

I enjoyed the challenge. I discovered quite a few new-to-me blogs that I liked and I will be doing my best to keep up with them in the future. Though since I am not doing a good job of following the blogs I currently subscribe to, this is bound to be a little difficult.

As in past years, the biggest problem was people who never commented back. I suspect a few people never even clicked on a link to see who commented, as odd that seems to me.

One of things that helped me figure out which link to follow from the linky link page is the categories. I went mostly with blogs that were on similar topics to mine – books! writing! – and that was better than clicking on random links. The hosts wanted us to click on links close to our own name. I did that, too, but the results were random. I mean, I can’t comment on a post if I have no interest in the topic. I just can’t.

I did notice a few people liked a post instead of commenting. It makes think they had nothing to say, but liked the post anyway. That’s good to know!

One of things I think I got better at during this challenge is picking pictures to illustrate a post. I usually suck at finding just the right picture and posting it.

The most time-consuming part of the challenge was returning comments and choosing the five/ten new random blogs to comment on. I hardly read anything during the challenge. I hardly wrote anything, either.

But it was worth it. The challenge was a lot of fun and I would do it again. But maybe with more preplanned posts!

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31 thoughts on “A to Z Challenge Reflection Post

  1. I’m surprised that this is the first Challenged you finished. I guess I just assumed that you’d always completed the previous ones, but with so many signed up each year it gets difficult to keep track.

    You seemed well organized. I like the theme you had. Clever and with a thread that kept it all together. Preplanning helps greatly. I did some, but not enough. This makes the Challenge more stressful and cuts into the time commenting on other blogs which was where I failed miserably.

    Thanks for the Reflections post. It’s good to know these things.

    Lee
    Wrote By Rote
    An A to Z Co-host blog

    1. Thanks! Happy I looked more organized that I really was. LOL The last few times I didn’t even remember the challenge in time to get my link on linky link!!

  2. I hear you about not having time to read other people’s blogs. There are so many interesting blog posts out there, and only so much time. I have a tough time finding the right pictures, too, which is why I’m glad that my latest posts have all related to TV shows or movies. 🙂 Great job on completing A to Z!

  3. I was one of those who planned out the posts in advance. I started writing them in early March, and had over half done before April 1. There’s just no way I could have done it “in the moment.”

  4. I started out by checking out the blogs around my own link too, but like you-I had trouble commenting on blogs that had topics that just didn’t interest me. I ended up just commenting with a generic ‘saying hi from the A-Z challenge’, to let people know I had stopped in 🙂

    Congrats on sticking with the whole challenge this year!

  5. I commented on a ton the first couple of weeks, then started noticing most people had dropped out. At that point, I just focused on finding people in the comments of the people who were commenting mine. That seemed to be more effective in finding people who were sticking with it! Congratulations on making it to Z!!!

  6. I visited any blog tagged WR or BO (I got through most of the list) or if they had a title with writing or books in the name. I would randomly choose some other types of blogs, but you’re right, the ones w/o tags were more of a gamble that either had a theme I wasn’t interested in or they had abandoned or not started the challenge. Such is life. It’s a fun month 🙂

    Here’s my A to Z wrap-up post. I also have an End of Challenge book giveaway going on for either contemporary romance or contemporary YA.

  7. Great work! I find the reading/commenting the most time consuming part of blogging in general. I don’t like posting and ignoring everything around me, which is why my blog is often not being updates if I can’t fully commit to it.

    And I too struggle with being prepared. I usually begin every Wednesday (my word post day) by asking myself: So what do I write? Planning ahead is definitely something to work on to help make the reading/commenting not so stressful. I think you’ve inspired me to give the next A to Z challenge a go!

  8. Like the others, I congratulate you for finishing! Huzzah. Like you and other commenters, my troubles were linked to reading other blogs and commenting (I pre-drafted the posts and edited/updated on the actual post day). I tried to comment whenever I read a blog, I believe I responded to every comment I received and visited back – though I tried to keep up with all reading,I strive to do better with that. I was caught in a busy work month, April always is. I hope to do this again next year and find a way to manage the time better. See you soon Sonia. Nice, honest and authentic post here!

  9. Hi Sonia,
    Congrats on completing the Challenge! I plead guilty to bring one of those people who haven’t gotten back to all the people who commented. I was traveling all month and could barely write the posts. However, I did visit as many other blogs as I could and left comments on them. Since I was pressed for time I tried to pick 5-10 blogs to visit regularly.
    Anyway, I’m happy to have come across your blog at last and am now inspired to go back and read some of your earlier posts.
    Cheers, and keep writing!

  10. I think you are echoing the experience of a lot of people. I maintain that the easiest part of the challenge, given a good theme and lost of pre-writing, was completing the 26 posts. Simply responding to all comments, then reading and, where appropriate, commenting on a batch of other blogs each day, was much more time-hungry.

  11. You did a great job. When I first did the challenge years ago, I did most of my posts the night before or the morning of. Now I plan them months in advance. Either way, we get it done and meet many new bloggers.

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