An A to Z Wrap-up

A2Z-2013-BADGEWow, what a month.

It passed by in a blur and I could have slept for a week after posting my letter Z post last Tuesday. Well, if work didn’t insist on me going in to the office everyday.

Now the dust has settled, I thought I’d do a wrap-up post re my first experience of the A to Z Challenge.

Firstly, thank you all for your visits, comments, likes and support during the month. I couldn’t have completed the challenge without it. Β There were over 500 comments (over 1,000 including my replies), you doubled my previous best month for hits and over 100 new followers signed up.

How was it for you?

I found this challenge more INTENSE than Camp NaNo.

You might think that’s a crazy assessment, you might not. Having to write 26 posts in one month really challenged me. I didn’t want to post a few photographs and call that it. I tried to embrace the A to Z Challenge and push myself.

Lessons Learned?

Let me clarify something. I call myself a PLANNER. I’m a DISGRACE! πŸ™‚

My idea of planning for this challenge was so inadequate it was laughable. Seriously, I had titles for around 11 posts.

That was my extent of planning. A TITLE!

Of the 11 titles, I changed FIVE of them and had only three pre-written posts by the 1st April. On reflection, that was not enough. Next year I will have more posts drafted before the start. Promise. πŸ™‚

I even managed to edit 12k words of I Can See You during the first couple of weeks. Next time, I need to just concentrate on the blogging during this challenge.

But, you enjoyed it, right?

I have had a blast.

Despite the poorly planned start (on my part), I’ve been more organised in my blogging than ever before and I’ve loved every minute of it.Β I’ve also met LOADS of new bloggers and followed many, many, many new interesting blogs.

If you’re wanting a concentrated list of new sites to visit, then I recommend the A to Z Challenge listΒ as a great place to start. A high-percentage of sites are tagged whether they are about Writing, Books, Cookery, photography etc.

I think this was a good touch and I’ve visited a good number so far and over the next few weeks, I plan on visiting as many of the Writing related blogs on the list as I can.


I like completing these challenges and receiving the “I Survived” badge. Jeremy Hawkins fromΒ Retro-ZombieΒ designed this one and IΒ display it with pride.

Next Year?

If you’re thinking about taking part next April, you have plenty of time for planning your posts and I would have a theme in mind and possibly posts planned. Go on, give it a go. You might have a blast too.

Thanks for reading.

Here are a few pictures that didn’t make the cut into the A to Z Challenge Posts.

kittens on stairs

Abe and Jezz as kittens

Bath - Pulteney Bridge

Bath – Pulteney Bridge



Lake Garda - View from the hills

Lake Garda – View from the hills

Symonds Yat

Symonds Yat

About Pete Denton

I'm a writer working my way through the redrafts of a British crime novel. I also write short stories, flash fiction and some screen writing. Check out my blog for more.
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44 Responses to An A to Z Wrap-up

  1. billgncs says:

    The end result makes you a “doer” — well done!

  2. Well done for seeing it through – it makes you wonder how some bloggers post every day throughout the year! I might have a go at this next year, but under a theme if I do.

    • Pete Denton says:

      I am in awe of people who blog everyday. Particularly if they have a day job as well. I don’t know how they do it!

      A theme is good. I know the sites I’ve viewed who had a theme have been really good. I will plan more for next year πŸ™‚

  3. I enjoyed your A-Z immensely Pete. Congratulations on completing it.

  4. becsym says:

    Excellent A to Z I have really enjoyed your posts πŸ™‚

  5. ocdreader says:

    Excellent job! April is great and wonderful but these last two years I have been really happy to see it go πŸ™‚ I planned more this year than last and it made things a lot easier but I know I will do even more planning next year and then maybe I will be able to get more visiting done. I enjoyed your blog a lot and wanted to say thanks for visiting and helping me get through my A-Z πŸ™‚

  6. Congratulations on finishing! πŸ™‚ It really was a challenge and now I know they put the word Survivor on that badge for good reason.

  7. suzanne says:

    Hi, found you via the reflections linky list πŸ™‚ It was also my first year attempting the challenge, very intensive, and at times annoying – but I’ve now learnt how to schedule posts so hopefully next year will be easier. Did I just say next year?!
    Suzanne @ Suzannes Tribe

  8. Jemima Pett says:

    Well done on finishing, Pete – and you visited me so often, too! I confess I started planning in January, and only had my guest posts left by April 1st. I did change two of my stories though. I really found it hard getting round as many blogs as I felt I should, and repeat visits were rare, so thank you so much for ocming back – it really spurred me on!
    And as for planning – I’ve already decided my theme for next year, and made sure the posts will be shorter!
    Thanks to CB for coming back many times too πŸ˜€

    • Pete Denton says:

      Well done for already having your theme for next year. I did shorten a few of my posts as well. I didn’t visit as many blogs as I intended, but I wanted to make sure I went back to those I did visit. It does take it out of you doesn’t it? πŸ™‚

  9. noelleg44 says:

    Never would have guessed that your weren’t totally organized for the Challenge, Looking forward to more photos and snippets on mysteries.

    • Pete Denton says:

      I was like a swan. Above the surface, calm and relaxed, below the surface battling away like crazy πŸ™‚

      Thanks for your support. πŸ™‚

  10. auntyamo says:

    I’m not kidding Pete, connecting with you has been one of the highlights of AtoZ – thanks so much for all your support and help πŸ™‚
    Looking forward to keeping in touch.


  11. Evalina says:

    Mission accomplished, congratulations!
    Evalina, This and that…

  12. I prepared just like you for my first A to Z. Last year I had about half ready and finally I learned. This year I had them all. I had fun too.

    • Pete Denton says:

      I think having them all done sounds the best idea then you have more time to respond to comments and read other blogs. I WILL do more planning πŸ™‚

  13. jmmcdowell says:

    I think I’ll continue to be a reader on this challenge rather than a writer. πŸ˜‰ I’m impressed by you and the others who managed to keep up with the schedule!

    • Pete Denton says:

      I’m suffering from a backlash of apathy at the moment. πŸ™‚

      I did enjoy it even though it was a slog in the end. More planning next time. πŸ™‚

  14. EllaDee says:

    I appreciated the effort you put in to the A-Z Challenge. Last year, just once I set myself the task of posting every day for a week on elladee_images… it’s a tough gig. You gave us 4 weeks of interesting, informative, relevant posts and a look through your photo albums. You deserve every like and comment, and the badge πŸ™‚

    • Pete Denton says:

      Thanks πŸ™‚

      I’m glad you enjoyed the posts. I have so much admiration for bloggers who post everyday and I know that I will NEVER be someone who does that on a regular basis. Maybe the odd month a year, but I couldn’t cope with more πŸ™‚

  15. Linda Govik says:

    Well done, survivor! Have enjoyed every single one of your posts: your inventive choice of words and your take on them made them a pleasure to read!

  16. Mart Dawson says:

    You done a crackin job on the A-Z. Very entertaining. Well done.

  17. Congratulations on making it all the way to the end of the challenge with your sanity intact πŸ™‚

    I love the photographs you included in this post, especially the first two πŸ™‚

  18. I love the photos. I enjoyed your posts. Congrats on finishing.

  19. Kourtney Heintz says:

    Great job Pete! I used to post 5 days a week at one point in my blogging life. It’s exhausting. But it definitely challenges you. πŸ™‚ Thoroughly enjoyed the A to Z Challenge! πŸ™‚

    • Pete Denton says:

      Thanks πŸ™‚

      Two days a week is about my level. Major planning needed if I’m going to do the A to Z again next year. I have burnout at the moment πŸ™‚

      • Kourtney Heintz says:

        I feel you. I’m doing 30+ guest posts for the book blog tour. I started drafting them in early May. I’m drafting 6 a week. When I get a choose your topic guest blog, I scramble for a cool topic. I love the Q&As–so much easier to respond to a specific question. πŸ™‚

  20. Miriam says:

    Well done! I got a lot out of the challenge this year. Would have got even more if I’d visited more blogs and commented more. Maybe next year…. Thanks for adding to my knowledge of memoir writing.

  21. dmauldin53 says:

    I adore Abe and Jess! Visiting from A-Z Road Trip.

  22. You did a great job Pete and these photos that didn’t make the final cut are fantastic. I have more time than you and couldn’t go back to blogging multiple times a week so I don’t know how you cope with it and a job as well. I reckon you’ll be up to the new NANO challenge in November again now?

    • Pete Denton says:

      NaNo in July this year for me!

      I enjoyed the challenge, but recovered by posting only twice in May. I don’t think I’ll do this again next year. If I suggest I might do, feel free to give me a slap πŸ™‚

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