Monday, May 7, 2012

A-Z Reflections


This was my second A-Z Challenge, and once again, I quite enjoyed myself. It does take over the month, but the life a middle school teacher can be pretty draining come April, and the Challenge is a nice diversion from the craziness.

I found a lot of great writers during last year's Challenge, and it was fun to see what they came up with this time around. I found more great writers this year, and I look forward to reading more from them now that they aren't bound by the alphabet.

There was no way I was going to make it to all the participating blogs. My goal was to hit at least 5 blogs a day, and if anything, I exceeded that goal. When picking blogs to visit, I went with titles that caught my attention. In my experience, if the title hooks me, the blog itself usually does too. I didn't follow every blog I visited, and I wonder if that's bad etiquette. Not that I'll change my ways if it is, but still, I wonder.

There were a lot more people involved in the Challenge this year, but I think I actually got less comments. Half the comments were my responses on a lot of posts, and even those numbers didn't match last year. I did have a lot more page views, but not the jump in comments and followers you'd expect with increased traffic. I'm not in it for statistics, but let's be honest, we all get a kick out of more comments and followers.

I do have one suggestion. I don't know how feasible it is, but I would like to see a best-of kind of thing. People could nominate specific posts for each letter, and a compilation of sorts could be created. Maybe it could even be made into an ebook. I think we'd all buy that, wouldn't we? We could nominate blogs for overall excellence, give people who are nailing this thing some kind of recognition.

I mean, Inger at Desert Canyon Living may have single-handedly increased tourism to Sweden with a month of beautiful posts about her homeland. And if Sweden is too far, after reading Julie's posts at What Else Is Possible?, you just might want to head on over to Cincinnati some time. My man David over at Brits in the USA had a musical theme going on, and he perfectly captured how music creates memories in our lives. I got to see Great Britain through L.G. Smith's eyes at Bards and Prophets, and Cathy at life on the muskoka river cracked me up all month. This is just to name a few, but the point is, a systematic way to acknowledge excellence during the Challenge might be a way to take things to the next level. Or maybe it's just me. It often is.

This is getting a bit long, so let me just say, I was happy to see the Challenge come to end, but I know by next April I'll be ready to go.

13 comments:

  1. I, too, was hoping for more comments and followers. Next year I'm going to plan in advance and lower my expectations regarding traffic and followers. Thanks for sharing!


    Eat Live Move

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  2. A "best of the best" kind of thing would be a lot of work for people I think. That would require judging. Trust me...judging (I do it for Rachael Harrie's campaign) is incredibly complicated.

    You should try and get Munk to come back to blogging. That chemical engineer thinks he can go on sabbatical like a college professor developing the cure to cancer.

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  3. 'In my experience, if the title hooks me, the blog itself usually does too.'

    Agreed.

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  4. At the rate I am going, catching up is going to be just as much of a challenge. Congrats on making it across the finish line :)Looking forward to reading more of your posts.

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  5. A best of would be great! This was my third Challenge (second as a co-host) and I saw some really amazing themes this year.

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  6. A Best Of compilation--that's a great idea, Tim. You should get that going. Still wouldn't get me to join the challenge--way to ambitious for me! But it would be fun to read the Best Ofs.

    Enjoy your May. Relax. ;)

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  7. Congratulations on completing the challenge. The list of participants is huge and I'm in awe of anyone who gets through all of them. I'm already looking forward to next year!

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  8. Congrats on finishing. I didn't realize you're a middle school teacher. Me, too - at least part of the week. Music.

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  9. It was hectic to do this during April of teaching, glad you finished successfully and I wish you a great summer as that approaches!

    I think the best-of would be a great idea. And, I don't think it is bad etiquette to not follow all the blogs you touch through the Challenge.

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  10. I finally made it over here to thank you for your kind word on Angel's passing. They meant a lot to me. Then much to my surprise I see mine name in your post. That is so nice of you and I'm glad that you and others enjoyed my trip back to the beautiful country of my birth and to my memories of my younger years. Thanks for this mention, Tim.

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  11. I meant my name, not mine. I do know my English!

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  12. Congratulation on finishing the challenge. During the challenge I didn't visit as many blogs as I would like to but, cross my heart, I'm visiting every single one with the reflection post! I am so glad my journey brought me here.

    Evalina, This and that...

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  13. I'm glad the A-Z challenge was such a great experience for you. Congrats on finishing.

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