Well, I did it – I blogged from Alpha to Zulu as promised.  The blogging wasn’t so hard, but keeping up with my blog visiting was, as usual, the big challenge.

If you have internet speeds above 1 Mb (512 kb would be nice, too) you won’t appreciate what it’s like to sit and wait for the pages to load.  And then the scripts to stop loading – or to stop them loading because you’ve got an error message on them.  Every now and then we get promised an upgrade to a fibre-optic network.  It was going to be 2015 – now 2017 looks optimistic*.  So I will continue to work my way through the list of A to Z participants and hope to get to and comment on more than twelve an hour some day.

This year it was particularly frustrating since I’d taken on the job of minion – part of Damyanti Biswas’s A to Z support team.  The task – to visit thirty blogs and support them through the Challenge, didn’t seem much different from what I achieved last year.  The trouble comes when you want to do more than that.  It is essential to visit the people who have commented on your own blog – I think I managed that.  I had visited blogs during the Theme Reveal that I wanted to keep up with, but didn’t – and then I felt I was letting down the people immediately after me by not visiting them.  In the first week I managed to get through half of the blogs I was following after the Theme Reveal.  I had another go at them the second week.  By the end of the third week I had only visited the fifty blogs on the list after mine, in addition to my ‘set’ blogs and my pinterest list.  It probably totals 300 individual blogs (although I’ve visited quite a few many times), yet last year I got to over 500.  Basically, there are a whole load of wonderful blogs out there that I haven’t visited and want to!

All is not lost – the AtoZ Roadtrip was designed for people like me who didn’t get to everyone they wanted to.  I can join that.  Or, having added a lot of blogs to my Pinterest “A to Z” section, I can spend May catching up with them all.  I might just do that.  Fortunately, blog posts are there well after their publication date.

Did I enjoy this year’s A to Z?  Yes, thanks to the support from all the lovely people who came visiting and who returned my visits.  But like many people, there was a time mid-month when I felt I couldn’t keep up with the pace.  I was disappointed with the take-up for my giveaway.  I didn’t feel I was getting as many followers as in previous years.  I felt I wasn’t doing enough.   So I regrouped, and did what I could.  That’s all we can do, really.

But I’m already thinking about my theme for next year.  I had an inspiration and started making a list of suitable words!  Come back then – you’re going to really love it – but come back soon anyway!

And I haven’t finished yet!  There’s exciting news – I’ll be blogging on the main A to Z site every 2nd Wednesday of the month, starting May 14th.  Any requests for a topic?

A to Z Survivor Badge 2014

* I was told at the weekend that the roadworks outside my house last week were to install the control centre for the new broadband.  That doesn’t mean it’ll be connected any time soon, but it’s a start!

Reflections on the A to Z Challenge 2014
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12 thoughts on “Reflections on the A to Z Challenge 2014

  • 5 May, 2014 at 8:45 am

    From where I sit, you did a great job. We aren’t exactly struggling with broadband here – 6mbps down and 750kbps up most days, which is not bad in a small hamlet of only four houses, 3km from the nearest village. Others are a great deal worse off. At the same time, I would love even the 20mbps obtained closer to the exchange, and fibre-optic would be the dream. Mind you, so would 100% up-time!
    I have an idea for next year’s theme, too. I’m looking forward to it already.
    Thank you for your posts, for your comments, and for your encouragement.

    • 5 May, 2014 at 12:16 pm

      Thank you, Keith, and good luck with next year – and your hawk-spotting 🙂

      A to Z of birds of prey, maybe?

  • 5 May, 2014 at 12:21 pm

    The winners of my Giveaway are now shown on the rafflecopter (see B or Z). All prizes have been sent or are waiting for the post offices to open tomorrow (it’s a holiday today). Winners came from UK, US, Canada and India. Thank you all for participating!

  • 5 May, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    You did a far better job than I did of getting around -and you still write, market and all that jazz! Kudos to you! I did visit more blogs this year, made more friends, and was overwhelmed with the number of fantastic writers out there!

    • 5 May, 2014 at 7:44 pm

      Well, it’s my third AtoZ, I was on a minion team and I’ve been invited to guest post monthly till the end of the year, so I do feel I need to be upbeat about it.

      I need a holiday…

  • 5 May, 2014 at 6:43 pm

    I’m with Noelle! You did way better than I did. I’m still not sure why I felt so overwhelmed all month. I have a pretty grumpy-gloomy Reflections post 😀

    • 5 May, 2014 at 7:46 pm

      See above 🙂 Overwhelmed is the right word. And you’d just got a book out too. I had just left the illustrations to April because that would be nice and relaxing, wouldnt it? Mwah-ha-ha….

  • 9 May, 2014 at 5:51 am

    You could have written my Reflections post as we had a lot of the same issues. Thank goodness for the Road Trip.

    Thanks for your help!

    Wrote By Rote
    An A to Z Co-host blog

    • 9 May, 2014 at 7:33 pm

      It’s interesting how many people are making the same comments. Maybe we all try too hard to be perfect!

  • 9 May, 2014 at 9:08 am

    You did better than me. I was too busy to keep up. And then I went away towards the end of the month. Well done!

    • 9 May, 2014 at 7:37 pm

      I learnt in the first year I did it to get all my posts done in advance. I can’t quite do that and keep my weekly flash fiction going on the current prompt – but I don’t HAVE to do those prompts! I could choose to do something different 🙂

      I was blown away by Sue Ann Bowling (Homecoming blog) who had substantial problems during the month, but got through it because she’d pre-posted.

      It definitely helps if you do that next year, Miriam – good luck!

  • 16 May, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    Holy Cow, that is some slow internet speed. You continue to amaze and inspire me, Jemima. Congratulations for blogging on the main A to Z site. I don’t know how you do it. I can’t keep up and we don’t do the A to Z challenge! 🙂 Next year plans? Wow.

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