I [eye] just blinked, and there goes the whole month of April. Gone with the alphabets!
This year is the first time I participated in such events. And completed the challenge successfully too!!!
So, I wanted to post the summary for the AtoZChallenge. But I do not want to wrap it up. Because it’s more than I just did it.
For me, this is a New Beginning.
Wondering what is it I am talking about? Ok, this is about a challenge wherein you are supposed to write a post every day [except Sunday] of the week for 26 days – each day for the respective alphabets starting from A to Z. Yes, mind-blowing. Or should I say mind-blogging? Whatever.
My blog was less than 3 months old. I had less than 3K views. As with every other blogger, was googling to find ways to improve. Struggling to come up with ideas for a topic to blog about.
And that is when I noticed a post on indiblogger mentioning about the AtoZChallenge. Isn’t it easy if you already have some words on a topic to blog about? Seems yes. But then, it talks about a theme.
Now what? What theme can I get in just a day before the challenge officially begin?
Do what you know than trying to know what you want to do!!!
– Truly yours!
So, was thinking what I know and love so that I will be happy writing about it. Bingo, Travel.
Since there are plenty of posts on travels and logs, I wanted to keep the theme a bit different. So, I decided that I am not going to write about places for travel but the places I actually traveled.
That brings in the real challenge. I did have some decent travels in the past two decades but that does not mean I would have landed in every country with a name starting in the alphabets I want to write about.
But then, hey that is why it is called a challenge – doing something difficult. Right?
So, I took the plunge and started to list out the places I want to write about.
April Fool, Oops April First
Initial days was no problem. Some of the alphabets are very friendly that it offered me multiple choices to choose from. But the most problematic alphabets were the Q, U & X.
With day passing, I managed to get for the Q & U. But until the last day but one, I could not find any for X. Because places beginning with X is mostly in 2 countries – Mexico & China. Me have visited neither countries.
So, I started looking at streets and piazzas in Italy to see if they are named after X. We do have many locations like Piazza XXIV Maggio and some others denoting the dates or year in Romans. But, I was not happy to go with these since I still felt it’s not the starting letter of the place name.
And that is when my friend hinted to think about the X-Ray rooms, X-class experience etc.
Wow, how did I miss this? Tenth class, I mean X-Class room was something I was fond of and keep visiting it during past two years in my school.
I looked no further. It was X-Classroom with all my memories kindled!!!
Add to this, I had official travel to Armenia [You guessed it right, that was my country for the first alphabet] for a week from 22nd April and that means I cannot spend much time in blogging. So, I managed to schedule T, U & V before the actual travel and somehow got time to complete the rest. Just for the record, it did cost me some hours of sleep in the late night.
All this actually made me think if I was smart or stupid to do such a thing. But when I saw the rewards, I mean the statistics of my posts, I was plesantly surprised.
Yes, in around 3 months, I managed to cross 3K viewers. After completing this challenge, I touched 20K views which were something I never imagined I could get. Not just that, I noticed a number of new followers on my twitter handle too.
So, the sleepless nights are well worth it.
It’s time to showcase some of the popular posts of the challenge.
Ostuni – Land of White house
Monte Carlo – Land of Street Race
Lecce – Land of Baroque masterpiece
New York – Land of dreams
Pisa – Land of Leaning Tower
Top 5 Positives
Now, some tit-bits on the positive impact of this challenge
- I posted every day this month.
- I read minimum two blog post every day. Some days with higher counts.
- Commented on the posts I visited – few did not allow me commenting, not sure why.
- RESPONDED to every comment that was left on my blogs.
- VISITED every blogger post who left a comment on mine.
This post will be incomplete if I do not mention few of the names that helped me to stay motivated for the challenge.
Please accept my apology in case I missed to quote any names, my friends.
There are still tons of posts I am yet to read from other participants. Hopefully, I catch up soon.
Last, I know many may not agree with me, but I did not control my flows in any of the posts I wrote. Never worried about if it was short or long. Did not keep any tag on the count of words. Surprisingly, there are popular posts with fewer comments than the one which is less popular.
And I think I have done something right in getting some posts popular with more than 1200 views. Trying to analyze how it happened so I can repeat the same for the ones that stay just with 125 views.
Well, only if I can read reader’s mind!!!
Snippet: Still wondering if AprilA2Z and BlogChatterA2Z are the same challenges? Or two different challenges? Or same challenge conducted by two different teams? And what not? I am sure by now you are sure how confused am I after the long one month of April fooling. I mean April posting!!!
For those of you who have been following me from day 1, will know that I started this journey with a Thirukural in Tamil. And I think it will be great to close this series with another one.
யாதானும் நாடாமால் ஊராமால் என்னொருவன்
சாந்துணையுங் கல்லாத வாறு
So, what it says? Basically, it talks about the importance of studying, reading etc. Since for a learned man, the land he travels belongs to him. So, why don’t people read? They should read. In this digital world, and in the world of blogging, please do read.
And make sure you read my blog and share it to make your friends read too. Lol…