Friday, May 3, 2013

A to Z Challenge Reflections

As you can see, I took a few days to recuperate from the A to Z Challenge. While participating, I let a lot of things slide. I think I've proved to myself that I'm one of those people who have trouble walking and chewing gum at the same time. Maybe not that bad, but I tend to over-focus at times--especially when it comes to A to Z.

I lived and breathed A to Z this year. Probably because I shared so much of myself and my family. I didn't intend to focus on my quirky memoirs but once I chose that first word--Ancestor--that was it. I was hooked. I began to get bored with my own postings when repetition crept in. If you were bored too, I apologize.

My first post was written the night before posting; the second one was too. After that I wrote each the morning of. I put myself through the proverbial wringer, forcing myself to think and write fast. Why? Because I tend to do the opposite: slow-mo. I take too much time to think and plan.

I've always envied newspaper reporters from the old movies. They get a story, rush to the newsroom and crank it out. I loved how they two-finger-typed it then yanked it out of the old fashioned Underwood without even ripping the paper. So... that was in my head. Write the story (the blog post) fast.

The A to Z Challenge is an excellent opportunity to grow our followers, but it's much more than that. We have an opportunity to learn, and train ourselves in a number of areas: writing fast, research, networking, socializing and making friends, meeting deadlines, self-discovery, self-discipline ... and learning from others.

For me, the real challenge is hopping around visiting the blogs of others. I got behind and never fully caught up. My apologies to all my A to Z friends.

I treasure the A to Z Challenge. I'm already looking forward to next year! Much love and laughter forever to Arlee Bird for such a brilliant April party.  

Can you tell me what you learned or discovered about yourself during this 2013 A to Z Challenge? Why did you sign up to participate? Share!


Lexa Cain said...

I never got "bored" with your posts, and I'm sure no one else did either. I had a lot of fun following the A-Z Challengers, and maybe I'll get brave and join in next year! :-)

Sandy said...

Generally speaking I wrote and scheduled my posts ahead so I could focus on visiting and commenting. I visited at least 5 each day from the list, and then visited all who had visited me the day before. Initially I was going to enter 1 blog so was really geared up for it, then a week before the started added 2 so had to play catch up a bit there. Generally though I was still about 5 posts ahead with what was scheduled, and by mid month there were no posts to write on those blogs.

Lisa Ricard Claro said...

Hi Jess - I found you through the RWA spreadsheet. That thing has been a treasure of trove. :) I haven't done the A-Z in a couple years--it's a lot to bite off! Congrats on completing the challenge!

Charles Gramlich said...

I'm a bit afraid of that if I took part in it. I'd get too focused and let too much slide.

Sue McPeak said...

Yay, we made it!!!! Definately NOT bored here! I enjoyed your Family History Theme, and like you it was a good exercise in keeping it short and writing by the seat of my pants. I kind of have always worked that way, so that wasn't the hardest part for me.

Keeping it short and working on a vocabulary that said 'alot' in a few words was my biggest challenge. I discovered I'm a much better short story writer than a novelist. I'm feeling good about that.

It was so nice to meet you through the challenge. Look forward to keeping up with your blog through my Blog Roll.

Sue CollectInTexasGal
AtoZ Reflection Post

michelle said...

Hi Jessy. Thanks for stopping by my place during the A to Z, and leaving a comment.
With the craziness of the A to Z, I lost track of blog visits/comments... so here I am! You had a very interesting theme. Gosh, there were soooooo many good themes but no time. (This is the general feeling)
Congrats on finishing the challenge.
Nice to meet you!

Writer In Transit

Helen Baggott - Author Services said...

As I said at the beginning, I followed your A - Z last year and saved your Blog for this year's event. I wasn't disappointed and I certainly wasn't bored.

Thanks for sharing your words and thoughts.