A to Z April Challenge – tried it?


My first 2014 post
is for April, and it will come as no surprise that the A to Z April Challenge is … a challenge held in April using the letters of the alphabet, from A to Z.

Is it free?   Yes.

Is it fun?   Yes.

Is it worthwhile?   Yes.

Have I ever completed the challenge?   Yes.

What is it all about – really?
Essentially, it’s about increasing your presence in the blogosphere. If you have a blog and you feel you don’t have many followers it can be down to several factors.

– You might have an interesting theme in your regular posts, but may not be relating it in an interesting way.

– You may find yourself wondering how to make your topics attract followers.

– You might even be new to the blogging idea and the best way to learn what works is to visit others – and comment.

– Make an effort to become a part of the international blogging scene.

I’ve provided a link if you click on the logo towards the end of this post. Or you can check out the details here: A to Z April Challenge 2016. You might well fancy attempting to complete the challenge this year. If you make the effort to try it, you have nothing to lose, and a lot to gain.


I heard about the A to Z April Challenge from writer, reviewer and prolific blogger, Damyanti Biswas.

I enrolled on the 2014 challenge and I chose to use the topic of writing as my theme for the month. As always, I had several projects on the go simultaneously, so fitting in a daily post and then reading and commenting on at least five other posts became a real challenge.

Okay, having said all of the above regarding my first attempt, I did enjoy my efforts and those of the other bloggers. My followers increased and I still visit some of those bloggers I met in 2014 during the challenge.

I admit, I am a writer who blogs, as opposed to a blogger who writes.

What does that mean?
It means that for me, blogging is a means to an end. It is an author platform.
For many, blogging becomes a social activity and in several years experience of the international community, I’ve found insights into many areas.

What did I do in my challenge posts in 2014?
As an example, I’ll provide the link here for my final post of 2014:Z[1]


Here is the link to my complete challenge profile for the 2014 challenge, which is in my blog Resources for Writers sub-menu:



Do I have any advice for those are considering the challenge for 2016?
Yes. I’d have two pieces of advice, apart from suggesting you try the challenge.

1. Don’t use the first topic / theme that comes to mind. List about five things you’re really interested in, and then choose one.

2. Set up a file with the letters of the alphabet, and build a small catalogue of posts in preparation. It’s even better if you can prepare your entire month (26 posts) in advance. All you have to do then is either edit them or have a quick look before posting.

Blogging A to Z 2016Interested?
Why not check it out by clicking on the logo to the left, or if you like, I’ll happily field early questions. Better still is to contact Damyanti directly.

Thank you for reading … and maybe we’ll see each other out there in April.


The Leibster Award


liebster_award[1]What is the Liebster award?

At first glance, it reminded me of an electronic chain letter, but without the associated pressures – it’s an e-social idea, it’s fun and does a marketing job for all who participate.

It’s an award given in the blogging community, to celebrate new blogs, or blogs with a follower count of less than 200. I found out today that the ‘follower’ figure is meant to be 1,000 – but that includes Twitter.

It’s also to encourage new people to blog and join in the blogging community as a whole. Our social blogging world, which is colloquially known as the ‘blogosphere’.

The word Liebster is a German word that doesn’t translate literally, but more or less means: kindest, nicest, lovely, dearest, sweetest, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing and welcome. I’ve listed the connotations that were passed on to me, and I’m delighted to have been nominated.

The rules, should you choose to accept the award from the person that nominated you:

1. Link back to the blog that nominated you. In my case Princess of Dragons, and with that link go my thanks.

2. Answer questions that your nominator has set their nominees.

3. Share 11 random facts about yourself.

4. Nominate 5-11 blogs that have less than 200 followers to receive this award.

5. Create 11 questions for your nominees to answer.

6. Contact your nominees and let them know you have nominated them!


My questions from Princess of Dragons, with my answers of course.

1. What is your preferred cheese?


2. If you could own an animal, what would it be?

An eagle, because I could set it free without worrying about it’s survival.

3. Mention one thing that’s on your bucket list?

I’d like to see a cure for cancer.

4. What colour do you think your soul is?

Transparent, so I can disguise my innermost feelings from the devils of the world.

5. If you could do any job for a day, what would it be, and why?

A farmer, so that I could enjoy a really long, tiring day and feel that I’d given something back.

6. Name one good thing that has happened to you lately?

I woke up – again.

7. What’s your Myer’s Briggs profile?

Dominant, Introvert, Sensing.

8. Quick, pick your weapon of choice?

Browning 9mm pistol.

9. When was the last time you cried?

The day after burying my dad.

10. What would you call the novel about your life?

A Life of Choice


Okay guys, if you’re still with the programme, here are 11 random facts about me:

1. I took up smoking in 1971 at the age of 19 – and stopped in 1977 at age 25.

2. When I was 17, it took me 6 mins 15 secs to run a mile. When I was 40, it took me 5 mins 15 secs to run a mile.

3. I taught my son to drive when he was 17.

4. Between the ages of 20 – 60, I had owned 20 cars.

5. I’ve driven (fast) around the old (long circuit) of the Nurburgring in three different cars … at different times.

6. I’ve had lunch with HRH Princess Anne, The Princess Royal.

7. I took up writing poetry in December 2007, and between then and 2010 I wrote 730 poems.

8. I type at an average 40 wpm.

9. I appeared in a national newspaper as a teenager, interviewed on radio in my mid-20’s, and interviewed on TV when 40.

10. I’ve had the same email address since 1994.

11. I produce my own A4 year planner every year.


My nominations (in alphabetical order) are:

Lynne:  http://lynnelives.wordpress.com/

Phil:  http://seventhself.wordpress.com/

Stephen:  http://stephenthom.wordpress.com/​

Veronica:  http://veronicahaidar.wordpress.com/

Kathy:  http://wktucker.com/

I’ll apologise here just in case any of them have more than the required followers.


Are you still awake? Here’s your questions guys:

1. If you could change your first name, what would you have instead?

2. If you could speak a second language fluently, which one would you choose?

3. If you could live in another country, where would you live?

4. If you could reincarnate as an animal, which would you return as?

5. If you had to lose one of your senses, which one would you lose?

6. Do you say, ‘the glass is half-full’, or ‘the glass is half-empty’?

7. If given the choice to turn back time, which year would you choose to be born?

8. Would you publish a 100% truthful autobiography?

9. Who is your hero or heroine, and why?

10. Stranded alone on a tropical island, which object from the modern world would you choose to have with you?

11. Give three words that best describe how you’d like to be remembered?

Well, now I’ve got that out of my system, I hope you all enjoyed it. Take it forward with the blessings of all who have gone before.