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Saturday, April 29, 2017

A To Z Challenge... Reflections




As I wait for my Anzac biscuits to come out of the oven, I am thinking about the last month. It has been an interesting process. Last year I did it unofficially. People were talking about it on line and I just...did it. I didn't sign up or post to the A-Z web site. My topic of choice was crime in Australia, because I'd written a children's book on the subject and it gave me somewhere to start.

This time, I took it up officialły and posted every day. I learned how to do a linkable link when commenting, which will come in very handy. I read posts on topics that interested me and responded to others who had commented on my posts and learned quite a lot from them too. I followed some so that I can see what they blog about when they're not A-Zing, and I have six new followers on my own site.

 There were three delightful folk who share my love of SF, and who are also funny people, so I followed them on Twitter, because it was too hard to follow on their Wordpress blogs. I tweeted merrily back and forth with them one night, wished them a good night and woke up next day to find twenty notifications, as they had gone right on tweeting to each other! 

I made myself write something every day, something that will help me to jog my brain into gear with my other writing, though teaching preparation is likely to interrupt. 

Yes, a fascinating experience! 

I chose this year's topic for the same reason as last year: I did a book about it. The book, Your Cat Could Be A Spyy(North American title This Book Is Bugged) was published in 2006 by Allen and Unwin, then Annick Press(North America). It's a children's book which sold out but due to most copies being sold by Scholastic Book Club, which is totally necessary but pays very little to the author, I have never made any royalties out of it. It's officially out of print, but you can still get it on line or ask your bookshop to order it, as it's gone to Print On Demand. If you enjoyed reading my posts, please consider buying the book. It's gorgeously illustrated by the amazing Mitch Vane. 

Ah! The oven has gone "ting!" Got to go. Feel free to drop in and read my book posts(thus us actually a book blog.)

Cheers!
Sue

19 comments:

Shirley Corder said...

Congratulations Sue on completing the challenge. I've loved reading your posts. I too am planning to convert my posts into an eBook and hope to have it out withing the next few weeks. It's been good following your blog. Every blessing on your future blogging adventures. Add Zing and Zeal as you Build a Better Blog #atozchallenge

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Well done Sue - and that's grand you've had some benefits from the A-Z and learnt along the way ... I have just followed you ... but my image doesn't appear for some reason - I'll check why ... still I am following. Cheers and see you - or hear from one of your spies soon! Hilary

http://positiveletters.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/z-is-for-zebra-zoo-and-zedland.html

Sue Bursztynski said...

Thanks, Hilary! I think there are a couple of different options for following and I do seem to have an extra follower , just not public. Can I follow you on your page? Let's take a look.

Sue Bursztynski said...

And thanks, Shirley! Your posts on blogging have been interesting and useful.

Tamara Narayan said...

Congrats on making it through the challenge.

Christine O Cheallaigh said...

I've loved reading your posts. I've always loved reading about spies, especially during the Rev and Civil Wars (those generals in the Civil War were idiots, they sent men out to spy and then totally ignored their reports 99.9999% of the time, to their detriment of course...and don't even get me started on McClellan! He should have just put a grey uniform on and been done with it, he did more for the Confederacy than he ever did for the Union, and also totally ignored his spies EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. Like, why send them out if you're not going to listen to them? Geesh!)...but anyway. :P

I used to have a book about spies, including stories about Nathan Hale and this woman and her daughter during the Civil War (Confederate sympathizers living in Washington DC, boy wasn't *that* fun for them). Some of the people you mentioned I'd never heard of before, so I got to learn something new!

My posts weren't nearly as cheerful (admit it, how many of you had heard of Ed Gorey and The Gashlycrumb Tinies before this month? I know he meant the book as satire as well as a learning tool, but man was he morbid!) but I had fun writing them anyway. Probably has to do with my own often twisted sense of humor (I rooted for the Joker in The Dark Knight...I can't help it, I loved Heath in the role and he did such an excellent job).

Sue Bursztynski said...

Thanks, Tamara! Ditto. Christine, lovely to hear from you. Next time, perhaps do a clickable link so I can follow it back to your web site? Even a URL would help. I Googled you and couldn't find it. Lots of hits, but none leading to your blog.

Yes, there have been many idiots in command over the centuries. In those days you could buy a commission, so the people on top were not necessarily there on merit. And I believe during the Civil War, some information was acquired just by buying a newspaper!

But Julius Caesar was not an idiot, but somehow managed to ignore his last spy report and get himself killed! Weird!

Shawna Atteberry said...

This was a last minute experiment for me this year just to get me back in the writing habit. I didn't make every day because this month was just busy, but I only missed 4 or 5 days, so I'm happy. I have to say writing a couple of blog posts a week now doesn't look near as overwhelming as did a month ago. So that's good. I've enjoyed your posts and getting to know you.

Sue Bursztynski said...

Thanks, Shawna! Nice getting to know you too! It was an impulse for me too, just to see if I could. And I could. And I've had an idea for what I can do with two or three of the posts. Two or three posts a week are normal for me - daily is unusual!

Julie said...

I came by to thank you again, Sue. I mentioned you in my reflections post. It was fun and scary and went by so quick!

Reflections

Sue Bursztynski said...

Thanks, Julie, glad I was able to be of help!You'll have more than six followers soon enough.

David Jesson said...

Congratulations on getting through the month! The networking part of it all is so important - it was great to follow along, and I enjoyed our Twitter chat. Next steps for me - I still need to write my reflection post, but that's coming up soon, and I plan to have an index page for the month, as I did last year. See you around!

David

Sue Bursztynski said...

David, it was lovely to meet you and your two delightful friends! I'm only sorry I can't follow your blog as easily as you can follow mine. Wordpress! AAARGH! But if you announce new posts on Twitter I will follow the links. And hopefully we can have more Twitter chats. I've visited Deb's Dispatches and read one of her stories - great fun!

Sue Bursztynski said...

Congrats on finishing your first "Official" round of A to Z! Many of us enjoy the challenge because it gives us something to focus on and to do continuously for a solid month. The thrill of being able to meet a deadline instead of just blogging merrily as I go is a nice change in routine but now it's over I'm sorta glad. lol Oh well, it was certainly a delight to meet you and perhaps we'll find our paths crossing throughout the year. Have a good week. Thanks for visiting my A2Z Reflection post but if you like mewsic then you may want to hit the dance floor with me and the 4M crew with this week's theme Singers/Mewsicians Celebrating Birthday Today!

Sue Bursztynski said...

Sorry, that was Cathy Kennedy, whose comment I accidentally deleted!

David Jesson said...

Hi Sue,

I've nominated you for the mystery blogger award -> https://abackoftheenvelopecalculation.wordpress.com/2017/05/15/mystery-blogger-award/

There is no commitment, but if you are inclined to accept, then the rules are included in the post above.

All the best,

David

Sue Bursztynski said...

Thanks, David, I'm intrigued! Whatever can it be?

Click said...

Congratulations on making it through the challenge. I didn't really explore Twitter this year during the challenge, it sounds like it worked well for you, maybe next year? ;-)

Cait @ Click's Clan

Sue Bursztynski said...

Thanks, Click! I always tweet my posts anyway, as it draws attention to them, so why not for A to Z? I followed the three I mention on Twitter because Wordpress made it too difficult for me to follow their blogs. But Twitter is very immediate, isn't it?