Home » A - Z Challenge » Monday Musings: Reflections on the A to Z Challenge

Monday Musings: Reflections on the A to Z Challenge

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So, I must reflect on the A to Z Challenge and share my thoughts.

First I’ll share some stats:

  • The post with the most views? Z is for Zilch. I’m thinking that people were so relieved that I was done.
  • The post with the most comments? C is for Chickens. It isn’t even my writing, but was a cute children’s poem that I shared.
  • I gained maybe six new followers.
  • Some days I didn’t even get any visitors from the A to Z link.
  • I did get a few comments from visitors making the A to Z rounds. Not a lot though compared to other years when less people were participating.
  • Most of the comments I got were from friends who are my regular followers and most of my views were from facebook. I share my blog posts on my facebook page so those would have been facebook friends. Some were referred through blogs that I follow and comment on.

Now I’ll share some thoughts:

  • Some days it was hard to come up with a blog post, but I did. I was determined to finish. Last year I wrote exclusively about Laura Ingalls Wilder and the year before I think I shared some favorite things. It was more fun for me those years. Maybe my posts just didn’t catch anyone’s interest. Although if no one was visiting, how could they know that they weren’t interested?
  • I will confess that after I saw that I was not getting many A to Z visitors, I (for the most part) stopped visiting other A to Z participants except some that caught my attention. My interest sort of fizzled. Was that wrong? Maybe.
  • Whenever I did visit other A to Z-ers and came across extraordinarily long posts, I would leave without even reading it. So I tried to keep mine on the short side as much as I possibly could.
  • Same with visiting other blogs that are sci-fi or something that I’m just not into. Totally understandable. I wouldn’t expect someone who has no interest in what I’m writing about to stick around.
  • However, we are supposed to visit and comment and I did do that at first. Sometimes if what someone wrote about wasn’t my cup of tea, I would still leave a comment to let them know that I stopped by. I didn’t get a lot of that.
  • I’ve discovered that people are most interested when: my dog, Duke, “writes” a post, I share something personal and from my heart, I share a poem (which gets more likes than comments), or I share one of my antique photos (which weren’t part of the A to Z Challenge, but just something that I do on Sundays).
  • I have some awesome friends and family. I know they are the ones reading my posts. That kind of keeps me going!

To wrap up:

  • Lest  you think I’m stalking who is visiting my blog, I can’t see who you are, just where (in general) you come from.
  • I’ve often said that I blog as an outlet, a journal of sorts and it doesn’t matter if anyone reads it. But I guess that’s not really true. I do like to share and entertain so it’s neat when a post gets a bunch of views. And I do miss the following I had at my last blog. And the comments. So, there you have it.
  • I have decided to cut back on the blogs that I follow and comment on. I’ve done this before and I’ve cut back even more now. There’s only so many hours in a day. And I suppose that’s true with others. That could be one reason I don’t have a big following anymore. Or it’s just because I have a crappy blog.
  • I still wrestle with the love-hate blog relationship. It does sometimes take up a bit of time that I could spend doing other things. I hesitate to write about certain things because they are too personal to share, which tells you that they really are personal since I do share a lot!
  • Sometimes I think that I should keep a private journal and just share my general thoughts (which I already do) and antique photos on facebook.
  • People who know me know that I overthink. So my thoughts here are nothing more than a reflection of my overthoughts. 🙂
  • Really, I’m not fishing here. Don’t feel obligated to leave me any kind of comment. I really enjoy feedback, but not if you feel obligated. I’m just that way.
  • There were two blogs that I saw that were writing about woman authors and one was a blogger that I met back during the first year I did the challenge. I have followed and enjoyed her blog ever since. I really enjoyed those probably the most. I learned about literary women that I had never heard of before.

To close, I think this year’s A to Z was a bust, for me anyhow. I’m sure there are others who put more time into both writing and commenting. I guess you could say that I got out of it what I put into it, right? I didn’t give up the writing part of the challenge, but I more or less gave up on the rest of it. So be it. I enjoyed challenging myself to come up with something every day and that’s why I got into it in the first place. In the end that’s all that matters.

 

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7 thoughts on “Monday Musings: Reflections on the A to Z Challenge

  1. I’m still trying to finish. I think I realized that I like to blog but it’s something that isn’t going to happen every day. I need to quit feeling like that’s not okay. I don’t usually link to Facebook because that way I have more freedom in what I say. OTOH, do you remember me telling you about the youth stuff I was going through? Yeah, our minister called me out on the blog postings I had made saying I was trying to decide what to do. So I’m not that anonymous.

  2. Hey Laura, I hear all your frustrations with A-to-Z. I participated for two years. I chose to not participate in 2013. Although I enjoyed the challenge as a new blogger and I did increase my following, I found many of the blogs not to my taste. That is to be expected. I also think a month is a very long time. I probably won’t participate in this event in the future.

    I did participate in a blog fest offered by Two Bags Full. It was much more satisfying mostly because it was of short duration and the mix of blogs were more interesting to me. And the numbers of participants ran about 400 – which was way more do-able. I think she will do it again next January. If you are interested in seeing what that is about, check my blog posts in early 2013.

    I also have back down on my blogging schedule and subscriptions. It does take up a bunch of time, and I find that if I blog maybe once a week rather than every day, I am happy to put time into it – rather than fretting about getting something “out there” every single day. Subscribing to fewer blogs also makes sense. Pick the ones you really want to read. Drop the rest. Quality not quantity is the key.

    My blog posts tend to be longish by some standards. I know that “short and sweet” suites some readers. I kind of feel like I am telling a story in a post – so some length is needed to capture the reader and build the story. If I do a good job, they don’t mind long posts. But if I am trying to get around to visit over a thousand bloggers, long post are are not good – I agree.

    I enjoyed reading your thoughts on this event.

  3. I admire you for taking up the challenge and sticking with it. I also appreciate the length. I wouldn’t read long ones. Save that for a real book. And I encourage you to keep blogging. I fear that I would just end up being a whiner so I don’t dare start. I know I whine too much on FB. The unwritten rule is to be all sunshine and roses but some days are just not that cheery. So keep up the good posts!

  4. I tend to “overthink” things, too–and enjoyed reading your summary of your experiences with the “a” to “z” challenge. I didn’t systemically read all of the posts in the challenge, enjoyed the ones I read.

  5. I have to admit that I never commented during the month, although I did read every post (of yours – not all the challengers!). I didn’t read each day, though – it was more a catchup every week or so. I haven’t blogged, done fb, or commented on anything in a very long time…I just got so busy all of a sudden, I would try to catch up on a blog I follow on my phone while in line at the supermarket or something like that, which isn’t really conducive to commenting – at least for me, as I’m a very slow texter.
    This post reminded me that it is important to let people know when they are making connection, and I do enjoy your blog very much. No matter what you write about, I always find it interesting. (I still think you’re my long-lost kindred sister.)
    Sorry this challenge wasn’t so fun for you, but you did stick it out and now it’s behind you. I look forward to reading all the things that you want to post in the future.

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