Image from Louise Williams‘ awesome Photostream
You know you’re part of a significant project when it’s stretching you like on a rack and you feel your tendons are going to snap so that you swear you’ll never do it again, and when it’s over, an elated sense of accomplishment wars with sorrow at its ending.
Nothing ever becomes this significant if there isn’t some mutually beneficial and empowering force behind it, and Arlee Bird has been a facilitator of that force since coming up with the idea of Blogging from A to Z in 2010. Now teams of people with the same vision dedicate themselves to the A to Z Challenge and I’m thankful their hearts are in it, because I can’t wait to give it another go next year. And next year I intend to do it right.
To that end, I’ve made myself a checklist for 2015. But for the purpose of this reflection, in a nutshell, I failed to maximize the potential of this challenge, and “potential” for me meant connecting with as many like-minded writers as possible. I allowed myself to broaden the scope of my theme reveal format which cost me time, reduced the number of participants I could visit, nearly brought me to a standstill midway, and lost me some followers who’d signed on to the original plan.
Fortunately, participants of the great and powerful A to Z Challenge take part with impunity, so I still walked away with a goldmine of great writers of fiction and non-fiction that I clicked with. Just to name a few you might want to get a taste of, these writers here I’ll follow like a pack dog: Jules, Josna, Damyanti, Aditi, and Janice Heck. Bon appétit!
Before you go, if you’re so inclined, do tell (among any other things):
What are the coolest blog sites you found?
Any items you’d add to the 2015 Guide list below?
Blogging from A to Z 2015 Guide to Gracious Hosting
__set your goal, what you hope to accomplish via the A to Z challenge
__take stock of what’s going on in your life and decide on a theme you can handle
__select a time of day that works best to publish posts and plan on holding to that
__decide on a realistic number of blogs you can visit daily
__write all A to Z posts so there will be plenty of time in April to visit and comment on other participants’ sites and to answer comments on your own site
__be watching the signup list and find sites of interest as per your goal
__participate in the theme reveal and visit and comment on all your sites of interest
APRIL the giving and getting of good hosting
__put the first post up on April 1 at the time you planned, same with subsequent posts
__pay daily visits to the number of blogs you’ve decided on and make comments
__respond quickly to comments you receive (shoot for NLT 8 hrs lag time at worst)
__do not deviate from your theme plan – if you get a better idea, save it for the next year!