Today is the official Blogging from A to Z April Challenge reflections post day. Those of us who took part in the challenge get to talk a little about what we did and didn’t like about this year’s challenge, give feedback, and reflect on our posts. So, here we go!
This was my third year doing the challenge. Like previous years, I wrote all my posts way ahead of time in February, got them queued up in March, and didn’t have to do much in April. I know if I tried to write the posts daily or weekly in April I would fail, so I always make sure to get them up way ahead of time. That being said, just like the past two years, I experienced a pattern. The days leading up to the challenge and the first week was full of excitement and enthusiasm and fun, but after that it became kind of tedious and grueling, and fitting it into my daily life was a concerted task. Somehow, I always forget that fact!
This year my theme was 26 Things To Hate About Writing. The theme was tongue-in-cheek, and meant to be a humorous, satirical way to deal with my own writing frustrations. In a similar vein of trying to be funny, last year my theme was Pandora’s Tacklebox: The Worst Romance Novel Ever Written In 26 Days (which you can now get as a free e-book!), a humorous romp that explored the various mechanics of writing and the worst possible ways to execute them.
I think people enjoyed my theme this year. I got a lot of comments and laughs, and quite a few new followers. I try hard to be, if not as funny as I think I am, at least entertaining!
Now, onto the things I liked and didn’t like about this year’s challenge:
- As always, the challenge is a great way to make new friends and find new blogs to follow. I meet new people every year and it’s always a blast!
- I learned some new things from the blogs I checked out.
- I got some new followers.
- I was not a huge fan of the new way of sharing our posts each day. I understand the co-hosts have a huge job with the Linky List, but I’m not sure adding our links to individual blog posts was the right answer. The main problems I found with it were time zone issues, so many comments it was hard to sort through them, and that there was no standard format for presenting links. If we’re going with the blog posts next year, I would suggest offering a comment template that would give more information about the poster’s link. For example, about half the comments each day, I had no idea what the blog or post was about, since the commenter didn’t offer much information. Not everyone is necessarily good at selling themselves, so maybe a standard format for information about the linked post would help.
- We could also get more co-hosts and go back to the Linky List. I for one would have no problem being a co-host next year!
- Things seemed a bit disorganized and delayed this year. Usually our graphics and all the information is/are available way ahead of time.
All in all, it was a pretty positive experience, even with the changes this year. It’s always a relief to get to May, though!