A-Z April Blogging Challenge Mid-Month Status

Almost 1,500 writers have been feverishly typing away in April on a challenge to write 26 articles each with a theme of a different letter of the alphabet.

We are now halfway through the month of April, with 13 blog posts completed, and 13 more to go. Will I make it all the way to the end? Follow me and find out.

A Background To My Blog

I created my first blog just over two years ago. Rather than use a free blog, the mist popular being Blogger (from Google) and WordPress, having already created my own web sites before, I decided to register another domain, this time for a blog that my wife and I were going to work on together, and so Off The Record With Debbie And Tony was born.

After a few articles however, my wife decided that she wasn’t really motivated to write a lot, even though I think she is really good, and writes in a different style to me. And so it was left up to me to write blog posts, which became less frequent over time, and eventually petered out.

Having started to write on Yahoo Contributor Network, I found that I could put my blog to good use by sharing snippets of my articles on there, however traffic to the blog was minimal.

In the last few months I have found that visits to my articles on Yahoo Contributor Network have fallen drastically, and when the A-Z April Blogging Challenge came along, I thought it might be the perfect opportunity to try and give my blog the injection of life that it so desperately needed.

What Is The A-Z April Blogging Challenge

The A-Z April Blogging Challenge encourages those who sign up to write 26 articles throughout the month of April, with each one being focused on a different letter of the alphabet (1st April = A, 2nd April = B etc).

Since there are only 26 letters in the alphabet and 30 days in April, Sundays are declared days off, which leaves just 26 days on which to write.

There are no prizes, just a large pat on the back if you complete it, plus having 26 more articles on your blog, and hopefully some more regular followers.

So What Did I Write About

I guess the first half of the month is the easiest, when my mind is fresher to work on the challenge, and also because I don’t have to worry about letters such as “Q” and “Z”!

I also had a week’s notice before the challenge began, and used this to write some articles in advance, scheduling them to be published on the appropriate day (a nice feature of both WordPress and Blogger).

I know that I struggle to keep focused as time goes on, and that the only way that I could have a chance of successfully finishing the challenge on time would be to keep ahead of the game.

Right now I have slipped from being 5 days ahead to only 2, which is a little bit worrying, however 3 of the most recent articles were rather long and took a time to write. I just hope the effort in allowing a 3 part story to unravel will bring the blog some more traffic as time goes on.

I have written about a wide variety of topics, from travel, to lenses that I have written on Squidoo , to food, and literally whatever topic captured my imagination for each and every day.

One article that I began turned out to be much longer than I expected it to, and I turned this into a 3 part series. Literally anything goes, and I hope to have a continuing readership as a result.

Here Are My Blog Posts So Far

Beginning with the letter A on April 1st, here are the first 13 articles that I have written for the challenge:

A Is For April – which means April Fools Day, practical jokes, and a quick summary of the A-Z Blogging Challenge.

B Is For Brain Tumor – which my wife was diagnosed with in January, and has now almost fully recovered from thankfully.

C Is For Come Find Me – where can you find me on the internet. If you would like to follow me on other sites like Facebook, Twitter or Stumbleupon, here is where I am.

D Is For Dine With Me – which discusses various articles that I have written about food and dining.

E Is For Evony – one of the most addictive multi-player games online. Here I dealt with the addiction that my wife and I both had, and how games like Evony can destroy your lives.

You see I told you that the posts were on a variety of topics didn’t I…

F Is For Fish & Chips – the Great British Takeaway meal, and with my wife having spent some time in her grandparents Fish & Chip shop when she was growing up, a subject that she knows a lot about.

G Is For Gloomy Mornings – don’t you just hate waking up when it’s still dark and you look up to see just a grey sky full of threatening rain clouds.

H Is For History – one of my favorite subjects at school and ever since. I especially love ancient history, and here my followers get to find out what it was that first interested me in history.

I Is For International Calls – which used to cost a small fortune, but which if you know what to look out for when buying an international calling card can now cost less than an inter-state phone call.

J Is For Jamaica – which is about my first trip to Jamaica in 1989 to install a computer system for one of the petroleum companies, but it’s not about work, it’s about my experiences there and my travels around the island.

K Is For Kingston Jamaica: That Is – ja mon! This article goes on to describe more of my travels around the island of Jamaica and what it was like to be working in Kingston.

L Is For Lime Cay In Jamaica – the final part of my trip to Jamaica describes the pirate town of Port Royal, a visit to paradise at Lime Cay, and getting stranded adrift in the middle of the sea in a small boat.

M Is For Money Can It Make You Happy – which asks the question that if money is the root of all evil, why sometimes you need money to be happy.

Well this takes us halfway through the A-Z April Blogging Challenge. I hope that you had the opportunity to visit a few of my articles written especially for the challenge, and if you have a blog too, I hope that you left a comment and a link back to it.

Any comments on how you think I am doing (or not) would be appreciated, and I guess if you see where my recent efforts have been centered, you will realize why I haven’t been publishing so much on Yahoo Contributor Network in the past few weeks.

Is The Blogging Challenge Working

Well, I don’t have as many new followers as I had hoped – yet! I also don’t have the traffic that I had hoped for – yet!

However, my articles and blog now have a lot more backlinks from other blogs, I have a lot more visibility in the blogging world, and since I always try to leave meaningful comments, I hope that over time the number of visitors to my blog will keep increasing and that Google will rank it higher.

Only time will tell I suppose, and I hope to be able to pass on some good news in the coming months.

One thing that the challenge has done for me is to give me something different to write about. I am not struggling to try and find a topic that might do well on Yahoo Contributor Network, but I am enjoying the challenge of writing something a little different, and with a theme.


Off The Record With Debbie And Tony