Monday, 8 May 2017

A to Z ..End of challenge reflection

It was my friend Sheryl's fault that I did the A to Z challenge this year. Obviously, the theme was all my doing, but I don't think it would have even occurred to me to participate if not for Sheryl's random comment. 
So thanks and blame both go to Sheryl.

A great many of the bloggers who participate in the challenge are hardcore professional-type bloggers. They use the challenge as an opportunity to build their business profile, to sell something. Others use it as a way to develop or advertise their self-publishing projects. 
None of that interests me.
It probably should, but it doesn't.

When I write, I am better able to deal with my depression. 
And when I write regularly, I write better. 

My theme focussed on things weird, bizarre and off-centre, but participating in the challenge helped me feel more connected, less adrift in a sea of strange. 

Some of the people I care most about don't bother to read my blog. 
Some look at it occasionally and tell me they only like the funny ones. 
This month, I heard from a couple that they weren't interested in my posts because my theme was too gruesome and (despite my research) the posts were a bit boring.
Fair enough.

But some complete strangers stumbled upon Wendy Off The Rock and responded in kind to my humour and my sense of the absurd. 
They made me laugh. 
I looked forward to their witty and thoughtful responses. Thank you:

Arti Leanne

Mind you, a few of the comments others left made it pretty clear they hadn't read my post at all (too many words?). They just looked at the pictures and left a note with a link to their blog for me to reciprocate the visit. 
Which I did. 
I visited 5-10 other blogs most days during the challenge. 
I learned some new things. 
And was prompted to introspection by a great many self-help suggestions. 
But not much made me laugh. 

I also found that the way we posted this year (without a Linky List) meant that the different global time-zones of participants were way more obvious, and it was more difficult to pop back to other blogs for a second visit. I don't necessarily want to sign up to receive regular posts from ALL the other blogs I visited.
I'm a picky bitch.

Anyway, I achieved my aims for the April Challenge.
I wrote regularly, which stimulated my creative bits.
You rewarded me by stopping by and listening.
You kept me connected.
And grounded.
I sometimes felt a bit hamstrung by my choice of theme.
But I got over myself.
And I giggled a lot.
Thank you.


  1. Yeah, my friend Hedone got me into doing the challenges... and she doesn't even read my blog! (much - every ninth blue moon or so she'll break down.)
    I curse her every year... and she giggles. ;-)

    Your topic was a hoot and you managed it really well. I thoroughly enjoyed myself - Thank You.

    Yours was one of the happy blog-discoveries for me, so I'm glad to hear that you didn't mind me butting my nose into your comments. Expect to have me do so again. We reluctant, snarky, picky bitches need to stick together!

    1. Indeed we do... I consider it serendipitous that you stubbed your sense of silly on my blog and look forward to having you visit again. I'll pop over to yours from time to time too.

  2. I believe I missed your posts during the challenge; but now you have my curiosity peeked! I've been known to be odd or peculiar, I blog just to share stories and thought and ideals, and if someone makes me laugh I adore them! If I make someone else laugh, I'm delighted.
    My Reflections post is up @ Life & Faith in Caneyhead.

    1. Welcome,Barbara. I see you've been tracking back through my alphabet. I do hope you're not disappointed. It'd be great if we can have a laugh togeter from time to time.

  3. Thanks for the fun times and for the mention. My friend in Sydney also read and thoroughly enjoyed your quirky posts but she doesn't do comments. You've gained us as permanent readers now. Cheers and cheerio for a bit, while I get back to some family history research. In SA this week chasing up my siblings, we've had some laughs over some of my shaky memories.

    1. Thank you, Carmel. Your recollections struck a chord with me too, and your comments had me giggling aplenty. Lovely to have met you. Message me when you come to London!

  4. I enjoyed your posts as they were interesting, weird at times, often funny and you seemed invested in them. No Linky List was a pain, although for me this year it wasn't such an issue as you know. I must admit I find it hard to keep linking back to blogs to follow a story unless the story really grabs me. Mostly they don't and I have way too many books on my TBR pile to find time to read that way. I hope to continue to see posts from you and good luck with your visitors.

    1. Exactly, Wendy. Life's too shot to read crap.
      I had web addresses of the blogs I wanted to go back to written on random edges of magazines and scraps of paper... Techno-trog in action. In the end, I gave up. See you again soon.

  5. I found your blog later in the challenge and I enjoyed what I read. Interesting and sometimes strange though they were :)

    1. Thank you, Kristin. I really appreciate your kind comment.

  6. I know what you mean about the self promoting themes - it gets old quick! I publish eBooks myself but the thought of harping on about them 26 days in a row makes me shudder (maybe I need to re-think my marketing strategy haha)

    1. Noooooo Your non-horn tooting way is just fine. More than one blog I met had written 26 posts about why I needed them to edit my work. ( I'm an editor). I didn't bother with them either.

  7. Thank you for your unique theme Wendy.
    Your reflection post resonates with me on so many levels.
    So glad to have found you--will be dropping by sporadically but with enough time to savour your writing.
    Cheers for the mention:)
    Reflection Post

    1. Ditto, Arti... I'm so glad you didn't feel the need to comment on my amateurish photos. Sporadic visits most welcome.

  8. Good stuff Wendy. You're mind kind of blogger. I write for the same reason you's for me. I thought your theme was unique and well worth the visit and the read. I'm glad you joined in. Thanks for mentioning me. You can count me among your followers, and I look forward to reading more.

  9. I thoroughly enjoyed your weird and wacky theme this year Wendy, and I am happy that your friend Sheryl got you to take part in the A-Z again this year.
    I can't believe how bloody rude some people are, if they don't like it they should just move on, not knock you for your choice.
    I like wacky and off-centre and I get your sense of humour too! Most of all, it is great to see you writing regularly too!!

  10. None of my friends read my blog either, so don't take it personally. Plenty click that they 'like' it on fb and twitter but I know they haven't read it. But hey - we write for ourselves, don't we? And if some strangers drop by it can often make out day. Well done xx

  11. I thoroughly loved reading your theme...Seriously it is hilarious but wicked too. Please don't bother about other people comment as i ma sure we write for ourselves and not for others