Monday, May 7, 2012

Reflecting on the A to Z Blogging Challenge

If you followed my blog in April, I posted about a TV show for every letter of the alphabet for the A to Z Blogging Challenge, a annual blogfest. Many of you found me from the challenge: welcome!

What made the challenge easy was choosing a theme, writing my posts ahead of time and scheduling them to post on the right days. This advice came from many of the bloggers who posted on the A to Z site prior to the challenge. Before I read that I thought, how hard can it be to blog every day about whatever? But it really helped! I chose TV shows as a theme because I write about TV for a site called slackerheroes with feature articles on TV, movies, comics and books. I figured TV shows was a general enough topic to gain interest from browsing readers while specific enough to share about the shows I like.

I bookmarked the A to Z Challenge sign up list - boy is that a long list! I made effort every few days to go through as may blogs as I could. After awhile I noticed trends. There are a lot of blogs with names like "Sue's Random Musings" and "Another One of those Writing Blogs." Some of the best blogs I found simply featured a person's name, which often seemed to point to professionals who used their blog for specific networking purposes and less for the "random thoughts." I also picked quirky titled blogs and those with a writing angle since that's why I blog.

I found some great ones, with a few surprises:

  • This blog is written by a 71-year-old author reflecting back on the movies she loved from the 1940s-early 1960s. Every reflection is infused with her personal stories and commentary on the era. I couldn't stop reading!
  • had a great comic book theme with lots of thoughtful and colorful posts on the comics world. A very well organized blog with a lot of personality.

The blogging community is large, but I also found overlaps. Some blogs new to me I saw comments by bloggers I was already familiar with. I suppose when you narrow niches to writers of YA or book bloggers you see some crossover.

If you didn't participate this year, I highly recommend it. I'm already thinking of themes for next year -- either books or movies, I think. If you did participate, I'd love to hear about your experience!


  1. I found having a theme to be helpful, too. I also bookmarked the Official List and worked my way through, starting with the link after mine. :)

  2. I participated--and while it was overwhelming, I felt SO proud of myself when I finished. I also got to find out about blogs that I never knew existed! :)

  3. Stephanie, finding great new blogs is half the fun of the challenge. You're right that scheduling is so important. I started doing it last year during the challenge and its made a huge difference. I'll have to check out your other writing gig. BTW is your blog the exception to the blog naming rule? ;)

  4. @Maurice - well, having a common name like Stephanie Scott didn't leave me many blogger address options, so I at least changed the title banner to include my full name! But I also liked quirky book/reading themed names in the reader lists. Like say "Sue's Book Nook." I already have ideas of what that site might contain. Something like "Arthur's Not So Original Thoughts" is not as appealing (I just made that up btw).

  5. Congrats on finishing the challenge! Sounds like it was a great experience--perhaps I'll try it next year.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.