I can’t believe April is finally over and so is the #AtoZchallenge; in fact its time to pen down the reflections post. Time sure did fly by even as I was dreading how I will complete the challenge as personal issues started monopolizing my time more than I had imagined.
This is my second outing with AtoZ; have to admit the first one was far more fun and thrilling. Well maybe that was my maiden adventure and so the excitement was more or maybe I was more committed to the chosen theme. Whatever the case, this year’s challenge filled me with dread once it started. For you see I was most unsure of my writing skills as a book reviewer!!! I had chosen to write about my all time favourite books as declared in the theme reveal.
I needn’t have worried! My super-duper readers/blogging friends not only read my posts but raved over them too. From my selections to my reviews – all of it was loved a lot and many remarked that they will miss my reviews once the challenge is over. Hot damn! here I was such a worry wart and there my readers simply loved their way through my posts.
I gained momentum and confidence with every post; I had written about 12 in advance and then a few at a time during April to complete it all well. Guess what I still have a few more books to write about but ran out of the alphabet 😉 Looks like I will be posting about them in these subsequent months.
My reflections this year are pretty similar to what I made last year and you could read that post here. Not wanting to sound repetitive, yet my reflections are very much the same:
- Choose a theme to write 26 posts in continuation; but choose one you are comfortable writing on.
- Advance planning is a must!!! Even if you don’t write all the posts, make sure you have downloaded all the badges, selected the graphics and photographs for each posts and also make drafts of each post with the relevant links, badges inserted in them.
- Schedule the drafts with the right date and be consistent with your posting time. Once you get in the challenge, you tend to read other blogs at a certain time and that becomes the routine for most. So if you are consistent with your post timings, your reader list will remain consistent too.
- Do take out the time to sign up on the master list of AtoZ blog and make note of other blogs, genres and what you would like to read from there. Then make an excel sheet of the blogs you intend to read through out the challenge.
- Make an e-signature of your posts to be left on the comment section of each blog. This makes it easy for them to locate your post and reciprocate if they so wish to. Oh and enable the linking of this signature onto your blog in the settings.
- Check and position your Shareholics to integrate with your social media handles; this way when someone shares your post, you are immediately notified and keep track of it. I found some very interesting blogs to read this way as shared by others.
- Everyday add your post of the day to the relevant blog lists. I had joined WriteTribe and BAR – blogging groups that I am a member of and they both had a separate post each day for linking up. This was a great way to read others and ensure good traffic on my blog too.
- Keep your posts short to day about 500-800 words as too long posts don’t generate much interest.
- Reciprocate reading/commenting/sharing on the blogs of those who visit you in addition to your reading list
- Reply to comments as soon as possible to encourage your readers to keep coming back.
Some of my favourites and must reads this season have been:
Simply Marquessa – fiction story telling
MammaSpeaks – fiction story telling
Ramya Abhinand – Book reviews/ strong woman character from stories
Pythoroshan – Stories of kindness from around the world
Soumya Prasad – favourite movies
Balaka Basu – caricatures of people from her life
Shilpa Gupte – zentangled alphabets and blogging tips
Seema Mishra – Travel with gorgeous art illustrations
Kalpanaa Mishra – Traveling through Delhi
Yamini Maclean – Vedanta
Shilpa Garg – Travel lessons from the road
You could catch all of my posts from this season here
Well that’s it from me on my reflections for the 2018 #Atoz challenge; do share yours too please.