Friday, May 3, 2013

That A to Z Challenge Reflections Post

This was my first year doing the A to Z Challenge. My thoughts:

Things that worked for me

  1. Posting. I usually post five times a week, so adding Saturdays (which I decided would be an easy post-a-photo day) wasn't much of a stretch.
  2. Visiting five new blogs a day. In my mind, this meant comment on five new blogs a day, so that's what I did. 
  3. Comment back. Yep, I managed to make it back to most of those that commented on my blog.
  4. The letters kind of fell into place (which I discussed on the 24th: Unexpected Connections). 

My fails

  1. Link back signature. I know. We were told to do this early on. But I checked to make sure the Google thingie linked back to my blog, and it does. Still, I should have done this and didn't.
  2. Blog hop hosts. I followed the blogs. I perused the headlines in Feedly. But most days I didn't get to their blogs. I should have, I know, but keeping up with everything else... Something had to give, and it was them.
  3. My comments were pretty weak all around.
  4. April 25th. I managed to visit and comment on five new blogs every blogging day except. (Birth in the family.) To make up for this, I hit ten new blogs on the 26th.

Annoyances

  1. Captcha. I only encountered a couple blogs that had this still on. But I only learned this after writing out my comment, and by then I was kind of committed to getting it posted. (I didn't go back to those blogs, though.)
  2. Unable to comment back. A couple bloggers' Google log ins go to their Google + page, which made it hard to find their blogs. And they (like me) didn't include a link in their comment. 
  3. "Read More". Some blogs only had a short intro, and then you'd have to click through to get to the whole post. Why? 
In previous years, I skipped the challenge but felt so left out. I'm glad I did it this year. I stumbled across some great blogs that I would not have discovered otherwise. (I ended up at #445 and managed to make it to #623 on the list.)

But I'm so glad this only lasts a month.  

So, how'd you do? If you didn't participate, are you thinking about jumping in next year? If you did, are you going to do it again?  

27 comments:

  1. I really like how you broke this into lists to review how it went. I was nodding through reading because a lot of what you have noted were things I noted too. I don't think that #4 on your fail list is a fail, though, I think it's pretty amazing that you did so well at visiting so many blogs! :)

    You did a great job! :)

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    1. Thanks. I called #4 a fail, because I could have gotten online. I should have tried harder.

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  2. I'm definitely going to do it again next year.

    Google+ really makes it hard to find someone's blog link. Blogger profiles are so much easier to navigate.

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  3. Boy, April was a busy month for you A-to-Z-ers. It sounds like you have more wins than losses, and I enjoyed your posts. Good job.

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  4. Congratulations on the completion of the Challenge,
    also a great reflection post.

    Yvonne.
    A TO Z AMBASSADOR

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  5. You made some good points here. The method of committing to visiting 5 new blogs a day would be more manageable. I also found it difficult to find the specific post I wanted to read when I was directed to their google + page.
    Now I have to check to see how mine is linked.
    Thanks for visiting my blog. Nice to meet you :)

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  6. The google+ are awful, some people have multiple blogs so you can tell where you're suppose to go. I did use the hyperlink thing, but don't like it. Much prefer name and url so when that was an option I considered it a bonus. Had trouble with lots of captchas, comnmets off, and those terrible Disgus blog. Trying to keep my momentum going, but with up coming work schedule, that's not going to be as faithful probably as everyday...but we'll see.

    Traveling Suitcase

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    1. I didn't much like Discus either. Or is it Disqus? Something like that.

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  7. I didn't like it either when there was no place to comment or follow! Congratulations on completing the challenge.

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  8. I had such a blast with this this year, and I appreciate your wrap up. I echo 90% of this. I made it to 10 new blogs a day, and whew, was that rigorous! I loved it though and made so many awesome new friends. I'm about 90/10 on whether or not I'll do it again next year. (90 being for, 10 against.) Guess we'll have to see where I'm at career wise.

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    1. 10 blogs a day! Yikes. I thought about doing that, but there were days where 5 was hard.

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  9. Sounds like you definitely had your challenges. I knew you were up to the task though Liz. You did awesome.

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  10. this is my second year. My biggest failure - no wrap up post. I really enjoy the month, but let go of some of my regular blog reading to hit new A-Z ones.

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    1. That must be the trick--give up usual blogs.

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  11. I guess there's a downside to having done the A-Z challenge 3 times in a row now - I don't bother reading the advice anymore, and so missed out on the pointer about a URL signature. Oops. :) Next year I will try to do that.

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    1. It looks like your ID goes to your Google+. Ah well...

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    2. Yeah, but there are links to my blog on my Google+ page :)

      I have a URL link to put in this comment now:

      Trisha @ WORD+STUFF

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    3. Which is how people probably found you. You weren't the issue. There were a couple Google+ pages where they were set to private, so there was no link to the blog whatsoever.

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  12. I'm still burned out from last year. Captcha should be called "Gotcha!" That's how I feel when I go through the trouble.

    Congratulations for making it through A to Z!

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  13. Excellent summary, Liz and congrats on your A-to-Z success!

    Although I sometimes forgot, I made an effort to include my signature with every post. I know my ID goes to my Blogger profile page, and Blogger will not allow me to post my WordPress blog as an actual blog. I have to list it as a webpage. Geez, I wish all these services would learn to get along!

    VR Barkowski

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  14. I had trouble commenting on some blogs, too. Guess it's all part of the learning curve. Glad you made it to my blog okay. Good thoughts and reflections, Liz!

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    1. As long as I could find them, I did. But yeah, it's the commenting that takes the most time.

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  15. The main thing is that you finished and you did okay with it. Thanks for being a part of the 2013 Challenge. I am now a follower of your blog!

    Lee
    A Faraway View

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  16. That is a great reflections post, so well organised. I like your bullets points and agree with them totally. Sorry it's taken me so long to come and check back after you commented on mine. I'm playing a game of catchup :)
    Tasha's Thinkings

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    1. Thanks. No worries about the timing. I think April did us all in, and I for one am playing a bit of a catch up game in May.

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