Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Totally Random A - Z Challenge Survey #1

by M. J. Joachim

Because I think you guys are awesome, and I want to know what you think about when it comes to all things A - Z.

Please share your answers in the comments, or email me at mjjoachimswriting@gmail.com with these answers and anything else you want to share about the A - Z Challenge. I’m one of your biggest fans, and I want to know your take on a few things.

1. What is the first shape that comes to mind when you think of the A - Z Challenge?

2. What is the first color(s) you think of, when you think about the A - Z Challenge? 

3. Why do you like visiting the A - Z blog?

4. If you could change anything about the A - Z Challenge, what would it be?

5. What is your absolute favorite thing about the A - Z Challenge?

This is the first of a few A - Z Challenge Surveys I plan to share on this blog in the coming months. Your answers are appreciated and will be considered thoughtfully. Thanks for visiting Writing Tips and taking time to comment on this post. 

Bonus question:  What's your favorite letter of the Alphabet and why?
M. J.

©2014 All Rights Reserved
Sorry, no photos or pics today. I want to know your raw answers, and don’t want to include any outside data that might influence your initial, gut reactions.


  1. That is totally random all right!
    1 - round
    2 - green
    3 - because one never knows what will be there!
    4 - non-participants removed faster
    5 - making new friends
    Favorite letter - C, because it's the first letter of my last name and all three books

  2. 1) rectangle
    2) turquoise
    3) the variety of topics and writers
    4) I wish everyone who signed up would read all the info we put up fo them
    5) meeting new people and making new friends

    Don't really have a favorite letter, but if I had to pick one I guess it would be T ;-)

    Tina @ Life is Good
    On the Open Road! @ Join us for the 4th Annual Post-Challenge Road Trip!

  3. This is an interesting idea. I like the marketing potential you might get from your results.

    Here's my answers:

    1. Circle

    2. Green

    3. The variety of bloggers posting on the site and the many different topics covered.

    4. The List

    5. Excitement of the community involvement.

    A is the first letter I always think of when asked this question--for obvious reasons that it is first and also it represents Excellence.

    This will be fun. I'll share and hope we get a lot of responses.

    Tossing It Out

  4. 1. spider's web
    2 Green
    3. For inspiration, information an encouragement
    4. Pass - unless more bloggers could disable captcha
    5. P - Putting pen to paper was a post, which inspired my first A to z in 2013. http://suesconsideredtrifles.wordpress.com/2013/01/25/putting-pen-to-paper/
    Sue’s Trifles

  5. 1. Square
    2. Green
    3. Finding information about the challenge.
    4. Some sort of Help desk for bloggers who fall off the wagon during the challenge, or who can no longer take part, perhaps a banner for them so visitors instantly know what's happened and aren't left annoyed.
    5. Meeting lots of new people from all over the world.

  6. 1. star-shaped
    2. multi-coloured
    3. there's a variety of interesting posts
    4. a way to manage blogs that fall by the wayside
    5. the atmosphere - it has a special energy/vibe... oh and of course meeting people...

  7. Hi, M.J.

    Fun survey....

    1. rectangle

    2. bright chartreuse (green) or neon green

    3. For fun and to see what's new

    4. The captcha drives me crazy

    5.The themes and all the buzz...

    6. I love the letter M... and not because it's my first initial... It's balanced, bold, and represents a millennia... It's just cool....

  8. Hmm...okay, I'll give it a try!

    1. Triangle.

    2. Neon green.

    3. To meet new people.

    4. That people would listen to the "turn off your captchas" rule.

    5. Meeting new people!

    Bonus question: Z...because that means we completed the challenge!

  9. This comment has been removed by the author.

  10. Hi Teresa, here goes:

    1. Sphere or circle
    2. Aquamarine
    3. Because it is a hub of blogger community
    4. A cleaner signup list, non participants removed or put on a separate list faster.
    5. Being part of the blog community and helping grow it

    A, because it is A to Z, which starts with A, and because A is the topmost grade.

    Sharing this survey now.


  11. 1. Square

    2. Green

    3. Helpful, especially when it's the first time.

    4. Categories

    5. A fun time reading blogs and making it through the challenge.

    My favorite letter changes depending on the theme I choose however, I've done well with "Z".

  12. 1. a circle
    2. green
    3. the variety of themes
    4. nothing in particular
    5. making new friends

    My favorite letter is A. It's the first letter I learned, and I like its shape.

    Romi @ In the Way Everlasting

  13. This comment has been removed by the author.

  14. 1) Circle
    2) Green
    3) Interesting posts from various writers
    4) More categories
    5) Reading the blogs and seeing what people come up with. They're so clever!

    My favorite letter is Q. As I said, people are clever!

  15. 1. square
    2. gold
    3. Finding lots of valuable information.
    4. nothing
    5. Reading everyone's posts - exploring their ideas

    Z is my favourite letter, it means I have completed the challenge.

  16. 1. oblong

    2. blue

    3. The variety of posts

    4. Eliminate people that don't continue to post

    5. All the new stuff I've learned.

    Favourite letter? OOoh I don't know - all of them --- Q maybe - some really inventive posts for it.

    Fil’s Place - Old songs and Memories

  17. 1. Triangle
    2. Teal
    3. To hear from different writers
    4. More specific categories
    5. Meeting new people
    J - It's the first letter of my son's name (Joshua)

  18. 1 - Square
    2 - Green
    3 - For the good blogging tips
    4 - I wish it wasn't so big and took so much time
    5 - Meeting others with interesting themes
    Bonus - D, because it represents dreams

  19. 1) rectangle (like a treasure chest)
    2) yellow
    3) always something new
    4) make it smaller
    5) discovering new blogs/blogging buddies
    Favorite letter - X, because it marks the spot. :D

  20. Triangle, green, interesting tips about blogging, stress the need to make posts short, find new bloggers.

  21. 1 - Triangle
    2 - Orange
    3 - Eh...I don't visit it often enough to know.
    4 - Sometimes it feels like it's gotten too complex, like I need to read a guide book to make sure I'm following all the "rules" that I don't know about.
    5 - Finding a few good themes that I look forward to visiting each day. Laughing with the funny comments I get at my place.


  22. 1. What is the first shape that comes to mind when you think of the A - Z Challenge? The letters A to Z.

    2. What is the first color(s) you think of, when you think about the A - Z Challenge? Green

    3. Why do you like visiting the A - Z blog? I love the content and suggestions in the articles.

    4. If you could change anything about the A - Z Challenge, what would it be? Nothing

    5. What is your absolute favorite thing about the A - Z Challenge? It keeps me motivated in April to blog.

  23. 1. a circle
    2. orange
    3. it's interesting
    4. I can't think of any changes. I do prefer the shorter posts, but that's up to the writers.
    5. The sense of community it develops. People are bonded by accomplishment.
    Bonus: A. It's the start and everyone is still fresh and having fun.

  24. 1. Triangle
    2. Orange, Blue, Red and Green
    3. Because that's where the updates and relevant/important information is located.
    4. I would do away with the categories, except for the AC one. I would also give out a few (more than 4 but less than 10 maybe) awards (badge and/or feature post) to participants who completed the challenge, as a way to acknowledge those who follow the rules while also celebrating their surviving the challenge.
    5. The boost or development in productivity and creativity that it fosters among its participants.
    Bonus: My favorite letter of the Alphabet is A because it comes first in line and I've always attributed that particular letter to the meaning of doing a great job.

    The Madlab Post

  25. 1. Triangle
    2. Red
    3. There's always so much energy there.
    4. Can't think of anything.
    5. The new blogger friends I always end up forming.

    Bonus question: A - its such a rush to get started.

  26. 1. Sphere
    2. Green
    3. Meeting new people
    4. Word limits
    5. Great comments from total strangers that become new friends
    Bonus question: L

  27. 1. What is the first shape that comes to mind when you think of the A - Z Challenge?

    2. What is the first color(s) you think of, when you think about the A - Z Challenge? Blue

    3. Why do you like visiting the A - Z blog? It's fun!

    4. If you could change anything about the A - Z Challenge, what would it be? That people wrote about things that really interested them, personally, rather than just stuff that starts with the correct letters.

    5. What is your absolute favorite thing about the A - Z Challenge? The madness of bouncing around the interweeb, meeting new bloggers.

    6. A!

  28. How fun!

    1. Triangle.
    2. Orange.
    3. Duh! Too much awesomeness.
    4. How time is against you. I'd totally get out my time-stopper and loan it to everyone participating.
    5. All my new bloggies. I mean, is there anything better than new friends?

  29. OK here goes
    1. figure 8
    2. green
    3. finding blogs I probably wouldn't visit if they weren't doing A-Z
    4.remove those who really aren't participating but using the challenge as an advertising venue
    5. that it is a challenge, makes me think outside my comfortable little place
    Bonus Question, the letter Q because the way I write it Q looks like a curled up cat and I like that.

  30. Okay, lessee...
    1. the A-Z letter box

    2. gold

    3. the blog itself? hmm, I confess, I don't visit often enough. :-)

    4. Dive bomb the capchas still present. My eyes hate you. Can't think of anything to change really. There's such a variety of styles to meet the letters.

    Maybe this idea that we have to race through everyone's blog (that's true whether it's A-Z or just normal blogs). Seriously, if you spend all that time putting an article together, you want someone to digest it and enjoy it. Not just, oh nice.

    5. The variety of reading matter. No, it doesn't have to be a short paragraph slapped up there (now going over a thousand words gets a bit draggy-especially if the subject isn't as interesting) but I like something to read interesting, makes me think, or laugh.

    Bonus: Don't really have a favorite letter.

    Sia McKye Over Coffee

  31. 1 : Round because the darned alphabet challenge never seems to end!

    2 : Colour! Wicked Orange colour!

    3: To satirise it and actually bring awareness of something I cannot stand.

    4 : Try and have those who only use it to accumulate followers and don't interact to stop being so self-centred and learn to be part of the essence of a blogging community. Yes and I beg those who do the alphabet thing to make their posts short.

    5 : The end of April. Sorry the end of May when all your reflection posts and Road Trips are finally over.

    Bonus answer : Z! And Y U ask?

    Gary, cordial co-host of The Alphabark Challenge, 2014! :)

  32. Interesting questions, MJ! OK, I'll play along.
    1. A square, but that might just have been the first shape that entered my mind.
    2. yellow. ?? No clue why.
    3. I use it as a table of contents. By reviewing who has commented before me that day I can go visit their blogs, knowing that they are up-to-date on their postings.
    4. Would love to clear out the clutter of those who end up not participating. If I only go by those who signed up for the challenge, I can spend quite a bit of time finding a new blog that has posted on topic.
    5. Two things: I love the structure yet creativity of coming up with posts based on the alphabet. This year my co-Swagger and I had a theme, and that was preferable to last year's winging it. I also love discovering fun new blogs and reconnecting with bloggers I've slipped away from.

  33. 1. Circle, because we're all in it together
    2. It's a rainbow!
    3. Taking me out of my usual neighborhood and finding blogs I never would have stumbled upon on my own.
    4. There seems to be a lot of different web locations with info about the challenge. I'd like to be able to get to everything at one address.
    5. It forces me to write daily...and then when it ended, I went back to my sluggish ways!

  34. 1. triangle

    2. blue

    3. I always learn something

    4. I would like one of the A-to-Z-ers to become so monetarily successful that s/he could buy an island resort and invite everyone who survives the challenge to visit for the month of May! :p

    5. Finding stuff in common with (a) blogger/(s) you did not even know before!

    Bonus: The first thing that popped into my head was a capital J. Don't know why. Although, when I was learning to write in cursive, I was quite fond of the capital Q. I didn't know why then, either. I also have trouble deciding on restaurants...but I digress. ;)

  35. *circle
    *inclusion of e.g. psychology/soul categories
    *connection conncetion connection; supporting others and being supported

  36. 1- trapezoid
    2- orange and purple and gold
    3- the lists
    4- being my first year I wasn't finding out about certain aspects of the Challenge until the end, like the Facebook page. I found out about it in a comment on someone's blog, around the time of letter U.
    5- I loved having the freedom to write about anything at all and still stay within the parameters; I loved developing the discipline it took to complete the Challenge; and I especially loved finding blogs I probably wouldn't have found on my own and meeting new people and making new friends from all around the world.
    6- no real favorite letter: I like them all. My favorite letters for this year's challenge were C, F, J, M, & W.

  37. 1 - circle
    2 - teal
    3 - great post and learn new stuff
    4 - non-participants removed faster
    5 - new friends/followers

    favorite letter - "X" just because things that cannot get explained always end up with the letter "X"

    Jeremy H.

    New Look, New Name and Same Stuff...

  38. 1. Square
    2. Green
    3. To read new updates about the challenge and there’s always interesting posts.
    4. Can’t think of anything to change at the moment.
    5. Seeing all the great themes people come up with for the challenge.

    Bonus: The letter S has always been my favorite letter of the alphabet, and it was super fun to do in the challenge.

  39. That is totally random!

    1. Rectangle
    2. Green
    3. I like the lists and visiting everybody.
    4. Everybody should turn off Captcha codes.
    5. Meeting new bloggers.

  40. To me A-Z challenges are very challenging. So, i give up...

  41. 1. Square
    2. Purple
    3. Always something interesting and useful to read.
    4. Nothing it is great, it is me I would change.
    5. Getting to meet new fantastic bloggers.
    Bonus: Z- because it is the most fun.

  42. 1. Square .
    2. Rainbow.
    3. Insights and support as well as guidance to do it better and right.
    4. I would like to have a live Web page of blog links that is updated with the post of the day by the organisers as the posts come in. A sort of "go to page" for visiting blogs. It works on first post, first updated link system rather than in serial order so you can visit posts in some variety.
    5. My favourite thing was the hands on, personal approach of the organisers and minions.
    Hope this helps.
    I had a exhilarating challenge.
    Count me in for the next survey.

  43. 1. Square

    2. Green

    3. I actually tend not to, since I prefer to visit bloggers who visit me.

    4. The fact that we have to deal with captcha every year.

    5. Meeting new people.


  44. 1. Rectangle, like the calendar
    2. Blue
    3. Helpful hints and community.
    4. It's already good. You could make category facebook pages. It worked great for the IWSGers.
    5. Building community and learning new things, meeting new people and their style of writing/topics.

    Thank you.

    Play off the Page

  45. HI MJ ..
    1. Christmas Tree - no idea why!
    2. Rainbow colours
    3. Meeting like minded bloggers and opening up opportunities
    4. People whingeing or moaning ... and non-participants being polite enough to let us know
    5. Don't let it stop
    6. J, Q, X, Y and Z - they stretch us to be creative ...

    Now what did others say?! Off to read .. but I did add about the non-participants .. cheers and great you're doing these surveys .. Hilary

  46. 1. Circle

    2. Green and orange

    3. Because I'm curious and it usually gives nice tips.

    4. Nothing much. I love it as it is.

    5. Knowing new great bloggers and have new followers who appreciate my blog.

    Bonus question- I love best whatever letter give me a challenge!

  47. 1. Triangle
    2. Red
    3. Community
    4. Wish there could be an auto delete for those who go a week without a post because by that time I don't think they will jump back in.
    5. Community
    BQ. Favorite letter: E - versatility.
    Maria,Delight Directed Living

  48. 1. What is the first shape that comes to mind when you think of the A - Z Challenge? A tree. I think of those rings of growth

    2. What is the first color(s) you think of, when you think about the A - Z Challenge? Green

    3. Why do you like visiting the A - Z blog? Direction, encouragement and finding great minds

    4. If you could change anything about the A - Z Challenge, what would it be? I only wish I’d known about it sooner. I also wish I could change a comment I made to someone else that was taken wrong due I feel to difference in languages. I was pretty much misunderstood. Lesson learned.

    5. What is your absolute favorite thing about the A - Z Challenge? Meeting new people.

  49. 1. Spiral
    2. Turquoise
    3. Amusement
    4. Get rid of slackers and those that use captcha
    5. Doing it!

    Favourite letter - I like both Eh and Zed as they are particularly Canadian letters! (I call it the 'Eh to Zed' challenge.

  50. Circle
    Because it's so varied and you get lots of tips and ideas
    I wish I could get round to more blogs I've been to before as well as new ones
    Planning the theme and posts for the next one
    J or maybe Q, or F and G :)

  51. This was my first A-to-Z Challenge
    1. rectangle
    2. green
    3. It's encouraging and full of tips.
    4. Hard to say because I am new. I wish I knew to be checking website for ideas-- I may have been told that or not. Wish I had done it. I didn't get started on anything until last week of March.
    5. The chance to write for a purpose- the accountability of a letter- reading the blogs as a community of like purpose.


  52. 1. circle

    2. red

    3. I see interesting guest posts.

    4. More people interacting with others.

    5. Catching up and returning comments.

  53. I thought of a regtainle and the color red

  54. Random:
    Red, apple, interesting posts to read and fun - what I like best, and favorite letter - T. Not sure what to do to improve it.