A to Z Challenge Reflections Mega Post.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

I’d be lying if I said I’m sorry the A-Z Challenge is over. It has given me a chance to breathe and get back to the stuff I lumped on the back burner. I’ll also have to play a lot of catch up with some of the blogs I’ve neglected to visit during April. I suspect you’ll be busy doing  these same things too.

I’ve learned all sorts of stuff over these thirty days. I learned about crystals and gemstones (fascinating stuff) from Holly Ruggiero and Norwegian mythology from Siv Maria. I’ve visited exotic locations thanks to L’Aussie Denise and way too late in the challenge I met Wendy, who lives in South Africa and shared interesting details about different tribes. 

Josh Hoyt discussed a range of personality traits. Laura Marcella (she’s a peach!) wrote about a variety of subjects including conservation and recycling, writing, and her favourite animal, the zebra.  Jeanne at Captive Audience posted some way funny pictures for each letter of the alphabet.  Robyn Campbell used a range of words for each day, accompanied by some witty observations. From time to time I dropped in on Damyanti’s flash fiction (poignant, in a word), zipped over to Leicester with Rosalind Adam and leaned about Egypt and world building from Sarah, the Aspiring Subcreator.

What I didn’t gain in followers, I made up for in the quality of the people I met during this marathon. I’ve found like minded thinkers, people willing to help me promote my work and those who dropped by to see what I came up with each day. Thanks a million to all of you!

Some days, it was harder to select words to do with characters and writing. Guess that’s why this mega writing fest is called a challenge. I was surprised by the number of people participating and of course, I didn’t make it to some blogs. In some instances I lurked, but didn’t comment.  Call it a case of being awed by the content or being unable to comment for lack of knowledge on the subject (like bands and such).

Last, but by no means least, many thanks to Arlee Bird, and his band of troopers listed below, who facilitated this month-long writing frenzy. I lurked around these blogs from time to time, but didn’t leave comments. I don’t know how you all kept up with the oodles of visits you had to make, plus keep up with your posts. Hope you wrote them beforehand.

Arlee Bird's Tossing It Out
Jeffrey Beesler's World of the Scribe
Alex J. Cavanaugh Alex J. Cavanaugh
Jen Daiker's Unedited
Candace Ganger's The Misadventures in Candyland
Karen J Gowen at Coming Down the Mountain
Talli Roland
Stephen Tremp's Breakthrough Blogs

I’m not sure I would do this again, even though I'm prone to throwing caution to the wind and jumping in feet first when faced with something that sounds near-impossible to do. Writing beforehand was the smart approach, but I’m not always the sharpest knife in the drawer. In fact, I'm reckless enough to think the spontaneity aspect would be lost if I had written my blogs prior to the start of the Challenge. When it came right down to it, I didn't make the time to write my posts beforehand.  The A-Z Challenge is something I’d recommend to someone who’s lost their writing mojo and needs to get going again. On my part, I went from multi-paragraph postings to paring my offerings down to bite-sized morsels.

It’s been an amazing experience that taught me how resourceful I can be as a writer. I found ways to link writing with the words I chose; not always easy, but I got the job done. I know I’m gonna sound crazy when I say this, but the best part of putting the posts together was finding letters and appropriate pictures to go with the subject of the day. So what if I haven’t grown up yet and still like playing with pretty pictures? I’m a writer. I’m allowed. Even better than playing with photos and such, I enjoyed interacting with everyone who stopped by my blog.

What’s the most memorable thing about this month-long writing extravaganza?

You, the people who dropped in to read what I wrote and to share your thoughts. 

 It’s been a blast!

And you haven’t gotten rid of me, I’ll be lurking around your blog in a bit. Resting up and all right now.

 Catch you later.


  1. Congrats on finishing the challenge. I found it a lot to keep up with too and I'm so behind on my blog reading! Hopefully I'll be able to catch up soon. Glad you found it to be a rewarding experience :-)

  2. Congratulations on completing the challenge! And thank you for the round up - I tried to visit as many A-Zers as I could, but definitely missed a few here and there.

  3. Congrats on crossing the finish line! I'm still trying to visit some of the blogs that I missed during the challenge. I've had fun all month. Am happy to be done, but sad at the same time...

  4. Congrats on finishing! I had to drop out for various reasons. It was a bit overwhelming, but I met some really nice people.

    I love LOVE this blue with the flowers!!!!

  5. congrats on finishing the challenge. It was a brilliant challenge, but like you, I'm glad it's over. I need a break! hehehe.

  6. Thanks for stopping in, the A-Z was most definitely a challenge. It's good to get back to normal, whatever that is. :D

  7. Congratulations on finishing the challenge. I had fun reading your interesting A-Z entries.

  8. Enjoy your rest. The challenge has been a blast. Congrats on making it to the end.

    The Madlab Post

  9. Thanks, Nas. It was fun to do.

    Nicole, Thanks!

  10. Congratz on completing the challenge. I love how even after it is finished I am still finding "new" blogs. Its great to meet you.

  11. JL you are awesome. And hey, you have a book birthday coming up this month! Huzzah! I have to say, I love the cover of DISSOLUTION. It tells such a story.

  12. It was very nice to meet you through the A-Z. I hope now that it's over I'll have more time to read and comment on your posts. :)

  13. Mercy, yes, since this last post I've come across new blogs, including yours.

    Ali, thanks. The cover does give the essence of the story.

    Sarah, same here.

    Karen, yes, I've met some awesome people too.

  14. I would do it again, but I'd make sure I wrote less. :P Of course, that was my plan for this year, and...yeah, didn't always work out that way. Haha.

  15. Trisha, the more you know. I only started writing less when things got desperate. :D

  16. Congrats on finishing. It was fun, but I too am glad it's over.

  17. Congratulations on surviving the A-Z challenge! It was a lot of work, wasn't it? But I liked that I discovered your blog, and of course, your beautiful pictures.

  18. Yup,I'm glad it's over too. Thanks for the shout out. I think May is all about recovering from the April challenge.

  19. Thanks, Angela! It was great meeting you too.

    Holly, yes, I was thinking that too, but now I'm caught up in promo madness. Sigh.

  20. Congrats on completing the Challenge. I did too, but didn't manage to visit as many blogs as I intended, so am trying to catch up now. Glad I've found yours!

    Paula Martin’s Potpourri

  21. Thanks, Paula. Yes, I'm still discovering blogs after the fact. Glad to have you.

  22. Great post to wrap-up the Challenge! I'm glad I found your blog, and am excited about reading your books!

  23. what a great reflections post. May will be a month of recovering for a bunch of us, but that also menas I get more time to get to know people better.

    Congrats on finishing!

  24. Hello, congrats on completing the challenge...
    Didn't get to read most of your A to Z post..will be reading them in May...

  25. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  26. Terrific reflections post, JL.

    You took the words right out of my mouth. I found a few great bloggers and managed to keep my flash fiction stories posted.

  27. Thanks for the mention, JL! I'm so glad I've met you through the A to Z challenge, too. You're right that meeting new writers and bloggers was the best part about the blogfest!

  28. Julie, thanks.

    Baygirl, yes recovery time is good. Liked the stuff on your blog, so I'll be around.

    Graywolfie, thanks!

    Michael, yes, I did manage to get my posts done and find time to socialize.

    Laura, I'm trying to stay connected to the folks I met during the month.

  29. What a lovely reflections post, and it's happened again that the blogs you mention I haven't visited yet! There were just so many, and I'm just not going to get to visit them all, I'm still feeling quite overwhelmed with it all. Oh, and I must say that I totally relate to the pictures thing! I had to smile, because I did that too, and thoroughly enjoyed choosing and cropping photos to complement the posts. *giggles Sue

  30. Hey JL, congrats on finishing the Challenge! Loved reading your reflections - it was a pretty intense month all round!

    Hope you get a good rest in!



  31. Sue, thanks for dropping in. I definitely got a kick out of getting just the right picture for each post.

    Rach, no rest for the wicked, so on I go writing, editing and marketing. :)

  32. There was an amazing array of great bloggers for sure and I'm glad that you decided to be one of them. You did a great job and you met the Challenge with success. Thank you for being a part of this wonderful month of blogging.

    Don't forget to pick up your Winner's Badge at my site.
    Tossing It Out

  33. Great Reflections post! :)

    It's been an amazing month for getting to know new bloggers, hasn't it? Even if there were a lot of blogs!

    Congratulations on finishing the challenge.

  34. Congrats for completing the challenge and for penning such a lovely reflection!!

    The best part of it all is the wonderful new friends we've all connected with :)

    Add me to the bunch, simply because I like your style :)

    (the trailing line of beautiful blue flowers draw me in too ;) )

    Cheers :)

  35. Thanks for dropping in, Arlee.

    Golden Eagle, yes, meeting new folks was the best part.

    San, thank you. Good to meet you too.

  36. Nice to meet you, even if I'm late! Shannon @ The Warrior Muse and I are joining forces in another challenge. We're going to visit and comment at each of the participants, starting with the reflections post. We hope you'll join us!
    Tina @ Life is Good

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