#atozchallenge Reflections, 2019

Image by David Mark from Pixabay

Well, the 10th Annual Blogging From A To Z April Challenge (hereinafter referred to as “the A to Z Challenge” or simply “the Challenge”) is done and dusted, in the can, finished &c. As is the tradition around here, both in Challenge Land and here on The Sound of One Hand Typing, it’s now time for John Holton’s Address to the Nation about The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly of this year’s Challenge. Maestro, if you please:

  1. To Arlee, J, JR, Csenge, and Jeremy: it was an honor and a pleasure to work with you again, and I look forward to the next 11 months during which we come up with a way to outdo ourselves.
  2. Thank you to every who commented on my A to Z entries, whether or not you were participating yourself. As usual, I did a so-so job of returning the favor. I will visit all of you eventually, read all your entries, and leave lots of comments, I promise.
  3. I enjoyed my theme, “words that contain an X,” and I hope you did, too. I like choosing themes that are word-based, where the words have a common thread (e.g. portmanteaus, words that start and end with the same letter, &c.) as opposed to subject-based, where all the words are related to a single topic. It works the best for me. And yes, I practice what I preach: as I suggested here, I already have a theme for next year.
  4. I was really happy with the level of participation this year. My first year on the committee, we had a couple of thousand bloggers sign up, but only about 40% completed the Challenge. This year we had around 600 and it seemed like most of them (i.e. you) were involved from A to Z. I know there were some complaints that every time a blogger went to a blog on the list, the person wasn’t participating. We make no attempt at “sanitizing” the list like we did in previous years, simply because we don’t have the resources to do it. If you’d like to volunteer to monitor the master list and clean it up, there’s a place on this year’s after-challenge survey to volunteer.
  5. It’s always good to see old friends participating in the Challenge, and it’s also good to see new participants. I know a few people who decided to take the year off, for reasons that made perfectly good sense. We hope we see you next year.
  6. To that end, maybe we can hold a contest to see who can get the most other bloggers to do the challenge. Logistics are always a “TBD” type thing for that, but if you like the idea and want to see it come to life, leave me a comment.
  7. I know we should try to get a list of ten things, but I just have one more thing to say:

Stay thirsty, my friends…

24 thoughts on “#atozchallenge Reflections, 2019

  1. Boy, not easy to comment after all those great comments! They already said what I wanted to tell you: I enjoyed your fun theme, and thank you for your commitment to the Challenge!


  2. Once again you had an intriguing theme. I like your word themes… I learn new words AND interesting stuff!

    Thanks for helping to make the challenge a success. I can’t even imagine all the work that goes into this. WHEW.


  3. I loved your theme John – x being one of my favorite letters. 🙂 And I’m smiling that you already have your theme decided for next year – you are indeed an inspiration. Thanks again for your work on the team, and for helping make the challenge such a delight.


  4. Hi John – congratulations on completing the A-Z and for being part of the A-Z team. Personally I’ve been put off by a few things when the changes started to occur a few years ago … so I’m steering clear at the moment. Cheers Hilary


  5. I sure enjoyed your X words this year! I was wondering how you’d manage it, and you did a great job! Yay for another A to Z for the record books and the 10th Anniversary! 🙂


  6. I thought you did an excellent job, John. My interest was piqued this year, but I had enough on my plate. Maybe next April I will be ready to join in!


  7. This is a great challenge, I have participated bit I just could Not this year. I do admire yours and everyone else’s dedication. 💜


  8. Great recap. I think I only got one spammy comment but it was on a post from a few years ago so I don’t count that.


        1. OMG, my Blogger/Pattern Recognition spammy comments have become hilarious! I’m on the fence whether to disallow “Anonymous” comments, because some of them contain gems. I screen all, so these have been for my personal entertainment… so far.

          Liked by 2 people

  9. Ha! Good reflection!
    I didn’t notice the part in the Survey about volunteering for Master List Cleanup but I’d be up for that.
    My one fellow “Fashion” participant did absolutely nothing.
    Also, I was the sole Automotive participant, and if you get rid of the category, I won’t be sad. I can switch my posts to Art.
    Speaking of Art, I want to get more visual artist pals involved, so yes, I’m interested in the “bring in more” contest. I happen to be in a Facebook sketching group called “Up for a Challenge” — the perfect targets!


    1. The thing about volunteering was one of the responses to this question:

      I’ll add your name to the list.

      The categories aren’t always reliable on the master list. I usually go by what they tell us in the theme reveal, because by then they can pinpoint what they’re going to do. Just a thought.

      I’ll bring up the idea of the “bring in more” contest with everyone else. I haven’t talked to them about it yet…

      Liked by 1 person

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