AtoZChallenge 2019 Reflections Post & Summary

Following is my AtoZChallenge 2019 Reflections and before this a summary of the posts. A big thank you to those that visited my blog over April 2019 and especially to those that left comments.

#AtoZChallenge 2019 Summary

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AtoZChallenge 2019 Reflections

After missing out on doing the 2018 A to Z Challenge I decided that I would not miss out again this year. So despite all my other work and voluntary jobs commitments, I decided to join in for April 2019. Being an irregular blogger I need challenges with a timing component to get me motivated to keep churning out the posts. While the quality might decrease with the increase in volume, the A to Z challenge does get me into action.

AtoZChallenge 2019 Reflections & Survivor's badgeThe Good and the Bad

On the positive side, I do like it that my many #genealogyphotoaday posts on Instagram are finally converted to blog posts. Starting as Instagram posts with a predefined hashtag I use an IFTTT applet to automatically send the Instagram post to my blog, as a draft. It even specifies tags and categories. These sit in my blog as drafts until I review them. I can join up related drafts or add more content on the given topic and then add research tips. Once happy with the post I publish it on my blog.

I enjoy the search engine optimisation (SEO) part of the blogging process that looks at improving the headers, keywords, images and more. For this, I do rely on the free version of the Yoast SEO plugin.

On the negative side, I find that forcing the topic to be based on a letter means some of the topic choices are not something I would think to blog about. Perhaps this is a positive as it stretches my creative side. Something that needs to happen.


I always appreciate the people that take time to leave comments and I did try to reply to comments and then go and leave a comment on the person’s blog. I am not sure why this year that I seemed to have many issues when making comments on other blogs. It might be that they are monitoring comments yet a confirmation that this is happening would be nice.

Typing up a relevant comment to have it disappear is frustrating. With Google removing Google+ recently, this may have caused some issues also. Many Blogspot blogs, owned by Google, forced me to comment under my Google account. This means that anyone checking out my link from the comment goes to my google profile and not directly to my blog. I checked that my blog was listed on my Google profile page. The profile format is not that nice with no ability to have paragraphs in the text and the image is made small and pixilated.

Was I organised this time?

It does help to have many drafts available to use in the challenge. The plan was to write posts before April so I could focus on commenting in April. I managed to have about 8 posts done before April. Then tried to get a number of them completed over the weekend. I ended up finishing many posts the night before or on day of publishing.

I tried to post each day on the A to Z Facebook page when my post was available. In the end, I gave up trying. As the day arrives earlier in Australia the letter was not available yet to add my link. I did use my own social media to promote my posts.

A to Z Team & Processes

I would like to thank the whole team for running the challenge again this year. I joined the master list. It was useful to find the genealogy blogs that I tried to read and comment on the most. It also leads me to some interesting blogs that I would not ordinarily read. Thanks to Jeremy for the graphics. I did the survey.

Many have been annoyed in recent years with the changes in the A to Z processes. I have no issues with how those spending the time running this challenge decide to set it up. The time an effort it takes needs to be appreciated and anyone not happy should volunteer to help.

What about 2020?

So in finishing this AtoZChallenge 2019 Reflections, I can say my plan is to take up the challenge again next year. I do need to prepare posts ahead of time! Perhaps a new topic.

You can view this year and previous years of the TravelGenee A to Z Blogging Challenge here.

AtoZChallenge Reflections Post

8 thoughts on “AtoZChallenge 2019 Reflections Post & Summary”

  1. I don’t think I visited you during the fest, but I will be going back and looking at your posts now that the fest is over. I have both a google and a word press acct and use which ever works. I used to have a problem commenting on my phone but that seems to work now and I did much of my visiting and commenting on the phone at night before bed instead of reading as I usually do at that time. I tried to remember to add my on the end of all blogs, but sometimes I forgot!

  2. I enjoyed your posts Fran. Yes, I need the motivation to post regularly too so the A-Z is good for this, but the letters X and Z are always difficult. On commenting I have the same problem with many WP blogs forcing me to use my WordPress account. During April I turn off comment moderation, but turn it back on again when spam overrides genuine comments. I picked up a great idea from another A-Zedder for next year’s challenge, topic sorted.

    1. Your recipes brought back lots of memories. I liked the proportions of the Xmas biscuits. I used to love condensed milk so only needing 1/2 a tin meant I would have a spoonful from the fridge until it was used up. I am not sure if it was just moderation that was the issue. I just seemed to be unlucky. Even earlier today I had comments fail.

    1. Donna, thank you for all the times you visited over the A to Z Challenge. Yes it is great that the “a href” links in comments are working. Other years I have used them however I too lazy this year to add the links at the end of the comment. Fran

    1. Thanks for visiting my blog. I have been enjoying your blog with the recent travels in Spain and have added you to my Feedly feed so I catch future posts.

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