My faithful readers are used to me joining blogging chllenges But never has a challenge asked me to reflect on my experience - until now.
Spring is awaiting me - tapping its foot impatiently - so I will keep this short.
I had heard of the A to Z Challenge three years ago - and, for the first two years, I had all kinds of excuses not to join in the fun. Vacation. Planting a garden. But this year, I did it.
I survived it and I learned from it. I picked up several new followers, and I hope those who enjoyed my posts on the theme "America the Beautiful" enjoy my regular content, too.
These, as an experienced daily blogger, are my takeaways.
1. This is a big challenge, and there is something for everyone. If you don't find several new blogs you like, you haven't read too many.
2. At the same time, I am going to miss some of the themes. I'm not the only blogger who modified her normal blog posts, and I am going to miss some of the other themes. A sometimes (well, many times) off-color sendup of Martha Stewart. The Roaring Twenties. Vintage cookbooks. Memories of a Texas childhood. Travel photos that have inspired me to, perhaps, get back on a plane one day.
There were a couple of more blogs I enjoyed - I will need to hunt down their links.
I will miss their themes, but I am also eager to see what they do the rest of the year. I hope to be able to blog daily (which I have done since late April, 2011) for months to come, and I hope you will come back to my blog time and again.
3. There are some excellent bloggers out there!
There were disappointments in the challenge, yes. The links I clicked on, only to find no recent posts. (I appreciated the one woman, whose blog I had started to enjoy, who told her readers that she had to drop out.) The posts that were way too long. (There's a place for that, but a blogging challenge is not it,.) Captchas. I have moderation on because, without it, I would be flooded in spam, but having a capcha is an extra step for commenting that will drive away traffic. Trust me on that.
There were several days I could not devote much time for the Challenge due to a family situation. I will try to pre write more posts next year. Some letters were truly hard (and I suspect we all know which ones those were.) Some of my posts were poorly edited because I didn't have the time.
And one surprise - the post that got the most traffic? One on earthquake bolts in Charleston, South Carolina. Maybe I should blog more about Charleston. I'll give it some serious thought.
you will love if you love puns.
To all my new readers - thank you!