Starting this month of April I was pretty sure that I was insane. I jumped without looking (something I rarely do) and boy am I glad I did.
It all started with a new little poster named Lee popped up in my comments saying he thought I would like to check out his A-Z Challenge. So I clicked over to it and was immediately intrigued. The idea was to post every day (except Sundays) throughout the month of April, working through the alphabet.
It sounded like fun, but I wasn't sure that I would be able to make it through every single day.
But I did (amazingly enough :)
I learned a number of things throughout this month, which I shall list following in no particular order.
1. I cannot keep up the posting every single day.
As much fun as I had this month, and as much of a challenge that it was, it is something I cannot continue. There were things that fell by the wayside because of it. Some of it was stuff I didn't really need to do, some of it was stuff I am now trying to catch up on and some of it is stuff that I don't have to do, but that I really, really want to do. In the blogging world, the main thing I missed out on was being able to comment on and read as many of all y'all's blogs as I wanted to. I have limited time to spend on blogging (though it may seem like I'm on here a lot) and I've decided I need to reserve 2 days a week for visiting your blogs.
2. I need to have some sort of structure to keep me posting regularly.
Even though I have technically had a blog for over a year, I haven't really been blogging for much longer than a couple of months. At the beginning (and I know I've said this a million times, but it's true and it's the beginning, so there you go) I was just posting mainly about Lost. Most of you probably realize that, other than mentioning it a little, I haven't posted about it pretty much at all. I discovered that I have other things I would rather talk about and share here, and I keep up a fantastic Lost dialogue over with the Nik at Niters. But once I stopped talking about Lost the blog wandered and hemmed and hawed and pretty much didn't go much of anywhere. I had started writing more regularly with my Retail Wednesday blogs, but was still spastic about it. With the A-Z challenge I had a structure. Mind you it was a very loose structure, but structure none the less. I had to take a letter as a spring board. Sometimes it was a very long jump from the letter to the topic (like "K" for Kart that ended up being all about video games...kideo kames?) other times it was right on the nose. But it forced me to stick to something in particular. So I sat down and looked at what I wanted to do and have set up a structure for myself. A loose structure, but something to keep me posting regularly and somewhat on track :)
3. There are a lot of wonderful people out there and I love meeting them!
Okay, so this one is kind of obvious, but it's so true! I've been slowly making my way through the blogoverse and discovering people that I connect with so well. I read a post recently (and I'm sorry that I can't remember who put it up. If it was you, leave a comment and I'll linky over to you!) about how we already have followers. They just haven't found us yet. I love this! It's so true. There are certain people that from the moment the comment or from the moment I click onto their blog, I just know we're gonna be fantastic friends! There are also a lot of people that I know I'll never be BFF's with, but that it's going to be a good, solid friendship. And there are people that I love to have as acquaintances, even if we don't completely click. Does that make sense? And even though I like visiting my BFFs blogs more often, it doesn't mean that I'm not going to learn something amazing or have fun at one of my acquaintance's blogs. We all have so much to offer and the casuality (yes that is a word. I just invented it) of blogging allows us to be pretty open. I love that about this world and I am SO glad that I discovered it!
The A-Z Challenge opened me up to even more wonderful people. I can't even list you all here, but I'm glad that I found you and I'm sorry I haven't been more present on you blogs, but, like I said under 2, I'm carving out time to do that.
4. People like my voice.
Weird. Really weird.
My "V" post was about how I've been struggling lately, unable to really write, unable to find what I wanted to say. That whole writer's laryngitis thing.
It was amazing to me how many people responded to that post. And a lot of you said you liked what you find here. Not to bring this to all about me, but it is my blog :P I honestly can't tell you how blown away I am that people actually care about what I have to say. By having to post every day this month I had to just write. And write and write and write. When you're throwing something up at 11:00 at night just to sneak it in before the next day rolls around you lose some of your filter. For me this was a good thing. I didn't have time to overthink and overanalyze every little word I put down. I'm really excited about how this is going to impact my fiction writing as I get back into that soon. I'm feeling more confident and more ready and excited for the first time in a long time about my writing.
5. It's not all about the followers.
Okay, so maybe it is. I admit I do happy dances every time I come over here and see another person has taken the time to click on and become one of my not-so-creepy-stalkers. And I try to make sure that I take the time to click back on them and follow their blog. If you like what I have to say, then I'll probably like what you have to say. (on a side note, make sure you have your blogger settings so that when I click on you I can access your blog. There are a couple of you I haven't been able to find because you have your blog hidden. I had it that way by accident for a while too, so just thought I'd mention it. Of course I can't remember how I changed it, but it's in the settings or profile settings somewhere)
What I mean is, I can't write a post because I want so and so to come follow my blog. It won't work. It won't be me. I want people to follow me because they like what I put up there, not because I played up to them. There are so many different types of blogs. I have to do MY thing. A-Z was a celebration of followers and a celebration of finding new people. This point kind of connects with a couple above, but I just find it so true.
There was some other point that I wanted to make, but I can't remember. Okay, brain fried.
Well, I just want to thank Lee for the networking and organization to put this whole challenge together. Jump over to his blog to see the other people as they contemplate what this month has meant to them.
I've completely lost my train of thought, but basically, this month was really good for me in so many ways. If/When I remember what on earth else I was going to say, I'll do a little addendum post :)
In quick other news... Script Frenzy wasn't a win in the technical sense, but I wrote 70 pages of a script that would not have gotten written otherwise. (only 30 short, I know!) My first project is going to be to finish the script, because I don't want to have another half/almost finished WIP sitting on my computer. So I hope to finish that up in the next couple of weeks and then I get to try to figure out which project to jump on next.