Thursday, June 3, 2010

Mission Accomplished and Winners Announced

The Great May Scramble is over! And it was so very good for me. Here are some things I learned along the way:

1. Encouragement from friends as well as having them work along side you sure helps accomplish a goal.
2. I CAN, in fact, embrace blogging and writing at the same time. Lately they seemed at odds, taking time from one to the other. But as long as I can adequately balance them, each is a nice compliment of the other.
3. Pushing through a first draft just to get the right word count can up my production. I’ve mentioned before that I’m a lister? Well, I’m also a huge outliner. I love outlines and sometimes it’s just okay to not know what’s happening next. Just push through. Things can seem clearer on the other side. (Yeah, you already knew that. But I’ve never done it.)
4. Writing everyday helps your brain stick with the story better, but often I still have to go back and read what I wrote last time. I guess my brain wants that. I don’t remember that being an issue before I had baby #3, when I was writing everyday.
5. How great it was to connect to old follower friends that I hadn’t visited in awhile. And to find new bloggers!
6. It’s much easier to comment and read blogs when I’m not holding a child. No wonder I’m slow about it—before I always saved that for nursing time. Now that she’s weaned, I’m not one-hand typing as often.
7. Most days it was all I could do comment on the blogs of those that comment on mine, let alone find new blogs. In that regard I failed and admire Jen and Susan who did.
8. Visiting ten new bloggers a day didn’t work out for me, three new ones a day was about my limit. Any more and it made me neglect my current friends and frankly stressed me out. Already I feel like there are quite a few followers I’ve lost along the way and I’d much rather reconnect with them. Maybe that will be my June challenge….
9. It is actually very easy to write 1,000 words a day. The hard part was stopping and getting back to real life. It seemed to work best if I scheduled in two smaller chunks a day rather than one huge, unattainable block of time.
10. Giving myself small moments on the internet as a reward worked well. I would muscle through writing bouts of time and then gift myself blogging time (e.g. for every 35-45 minutes of writing, I’d let myself have 10-15 minutes to visit your blogs.)
11. I’ve created a habit of writing and blogging everyday and man has my WIP benefited from it!

For those of you involved, what have you learned? I’d love to hear.

So I suppose now you’d like to know who the winners were. Okay, fine. I’ll not make you wait any longer.
Option #1 Winner: Sharon Mayhew!
Here’s a hint at what to expect in the mail, Sharon: A basket of 2010 debut reads to relax from all your hard work on the challenge. And a journal to document it. :o)
Option #2 Winner: Catherine Denton!
As promised, I’ll mail out Walking on Alligators as soon as Amazon stops being so lame and taking forever sending it to me.

Thanks to all for joining in! And if you'd like, feel free to take the picture and wear it proudly on your blog. You deserve it!
Really, tell me how this experience was for you. I’m dying to know for future drawings.


  1. Congratulations to the winners! I won't lie I am so bummed I didn't get a special pacakage from you! I've never gotten something like that before and it seemed so cool! Maybe one of these days I'll be able to snag a prize pack from you! Here's hoping ;)

    Aw, thanks for the little shout-out I appreciate! What can I say I'm an incredibly fast typer (it's currently what I get to paid to do - data entry). It doesn't mean I made progress on my WiP as my WiP has tortured me!

    I am so excited to have been one the first commentors! I learned a lot, how to manage time and blogs! I had to make some extra time to go back to all my favorite and beloved bloggers and then visit new ones. It wasn't easy visiting the new blogs, I pushed through though and searched my little heart out!

    I can't wait to put my proud badge up on my blog! It will link back to your lovely blog :)

  2. Just reading Jen's comment here is it any wonder she's hitting 500 followers after such a short time? Anyway, on topic-- I think i did pretty well with it. I admire those of you with small children who still manage to do it all. I'm not sure I would have been as balanced back in those days if I'd had the internet! I learned I can balance social media & writing better if I cut back my posts to 3 a week rather than 5, and if I connect with those who are connecting with me, and let the other ones go. That has limited my commenting time which is good. And also I've learned that I follow enough blogs already! I will add a few now and then but not as indiscriminately as I was doing.

  3. Jackee you are the sweetest! Thanks for rooting for me! I agree... silly random numbers! I've never been good at the game of luck, I suppose after you've done a gazillion contests maybe I'll snag one!

    That or I'll eventually have to pay you for one!!

    Karen - Girl you are too sweet, thanks for the kind words :)

  4. Congrats to the winners and especially to you, Jackee, for discovering what you can accomplish!

  5. I'm so excited, Jackee!!! I can't believe I won. I really learned a lot this month too. Your challenge really helped me focus. I didn't make my word count, but I did make my 3 new blogs a day count and I wrote, researched or revised Monday-Friday. I came up with several new ideas for nf articles and advanced my mg wip. I'll be posting about all that I learned. Thanks for hosting the challenge. :)

    I can't wait to post your badge on my blog. Very cool!

  6. I won?!! YAY!! I'll admit, this challenge took more effort than I thought it would but the rewards were great. You got me writing regularly again and I really needed that, so thank you! I don't like to miss deadlines, so it was helpful to have that looming over me. Thanks for getting the ball rolling!
    Winged Writer

  7. Wish I'd known about the May Scramble.

    And if you think it's tough to blog with a child on your lap, try a cat instead. Or two!

  8. Great job on your May scramble! That's very inspiring.

  9. Congrats to the winners! I'm so glad you got so much out of it! 3 blogs a day is still very good :)

  10. Congrats to the winners - and to you for pushing through what must have been a very busy month!

  11. Congrats to Sharon and Catherine! It sounds like you learned a lot of wonderful lessons - ones we can all benefit from! :-)

  12. Congratulations with surviving the Great May Scramble!! And Congratulations to the winners too!!! Yay!!!

    And I like that you're finding a balance that works for you - I find that blogging could really take over so just finding that happy place where you fit all that you love in is a great acheivement!

    Good luck with your WIP!!!

    Take care

  13. This is soooo cool. I love this idea. Do you all use Dr. Wicked?

  14. I am breathless after reading all you accomplished during the month of May. Well done to you, you super writer, blogger mother. A big congratualtions to you.

  15. All excellent revelations! I almost always blog with a toddler on my lap. That probably explains why my comments are so random. :)

  16. You experience is very encouraging. I’m trying to get back into the swing of things.

  17. Congrats to you and the winners. You did a great job in May. It's hard to add new bloggy friends in more than a few at a time. I hate neglecting anyone too!

  18. Congrats to the winners! And thanks for the shout-out. :) My biggest accomplishment was getting in the habit of visiting the blog of everyone who commented on my blog every night (though the occasional busy day/night did make me have to push it to the next day at times). That's an awesome habit to get into, something I've always tried to do but having a little pressure from the challenge definitely gave me the extra incentive when needed! Thanks for hosting a great challenge, Jackee!

  19. Oh, and I also found (like you) that it works well to take a blogging break while I'm writing. That gives me a little break from the writing (which I usually need anyway) and I can catch up on a few blogs at the same time. That works better for me than trying to visit a bunch all at once - it's hard to get that block of time.

    Thanks for the cupcake badge - I've got it proudly displayed on my sideabar already! :)

  20. Congrats to all who survived the May scramble! It looks like a few people found they could strike a good balance between blogging, writing, and life.

    Glad you're in a writing groove!

  21. Congratulations on getting so much writing accomplished. Yes, writing begets more writing! And better writing, too. :)