My Life

3 Lessons To Learn From My #31WriteNow Challenge Fail

On the last day of July 2013, I wrote a post announcing that I was doing #31WriteNow blogging challenge. I challenged myself (and other fellow bloggers) to commit to posting something new on their websites EVERY DAY in August. I did a similar challenge (#30WriteNow) in October 2012 and surprised myself when I rocked it out and rose up to it! 33 new posts happened that month and my blog traffic doubled and I hit my virtual dougie.

But I wasn’t about that commitment life during this challenge because I missed eight days of posting in August. And I bet folks are like:

fail failed gif

I did put up 26 new posts, though. So it wasn’t a total fail. I just didn’t push myself like I could have.

One awesome thing that happened during #31WriteNow is that I found new blogs to read. In fact, I was incredibly surprised by how many people joined the challenge! I clicked the hashtag on Twitter and it led me to some gems. So that was cool. Thanks to everyone who joined in!

Here are 3 lessons to walk away with, for those who participated (and for myself too).

1. When you fall off the wagon, it doesn’t mean you’ve failed. Many people started feeling guilty when they skipped days during the challenge but I tried to remind folks (over Twitter) that there was always the next day. Skipping 5 days in a row doesn’t mean you had to write 5 new posts. It just meant you needed to write the next day. JUST WRITE.

2. There are some awesome unknown bloggers out there still. #31WriteNow exposed me to so many good and new blogs that show that no matter how crowded blogosphere is, there’s space for new and fresh voices. There isn’t one blog out there right now that covers topic NO ONE HAS EVER covered and that’s fine. What matters is your voice and the game needs it.

3. It’s about building a habit. #31WriteNow is more about building a habit and being consistent than it is about frequency. Because if you can put up at least 20 posts in that month, you know that moving forward, you can be more consistent. And that is key because you create a routine for your readers.

And the bonus lesson is:

When you have an idea, write it. Right there. There are tons of times when you’ll have an idea and feel real passionate about it. Right then, write it out. Because oftentimes, when you wait, it will pass you by. And you’ll be all “Eh. I don’t feel like it anymore.” Some of my best posts are the ones I’ve written out as they came to me.

But really, I don’t consider the challenge a fail, even if I missed days. It’s a reminder to me to stay consistent, but it’s ok for me to fall off some days. Many of us are one-(wo)man teams so dropping the ball will happen. We just gotta pick the ball back up and keep playing. Nah mean?!

For those who participated in #31WriteNow, how was it? Did you get 31 posts up? If not, how many? Did you see any change in your site traffic? Tell a G!

Writing is hard lisa simpson gif

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22 Comments

  1. September 3, 2013 at 11:17 am

    This challenge was EXACTLY what I needed, to jumpstart my lazy self back into writing. I almost forgot how much I love it, and how much writing is a part of me.

    Almost.

    And I was introduced to some amazing writers in the process.

    Thanks again…

  2. September 3, 2013 at 11:23 am

    I’m SO glad I decided to do this! I found cool sites to read and I read got into my blog even more. I also got a ton of new readers! Thanks for the idea Luvvie!

    • September 3, 2013 at 11:27 am

      Really, not read.

  3. September 3, 2013 at 11:23 am

    I always say I’m going to do something like that. I think posting daily would get even more traffic to my blog and would be a good writing exercise. The problem is that every time I’ve tried I’ve never really risen up to the challenge. Something always seems to happen to stop me from posting daily. Excuses, excuses … I’m so full of them. That’s my real problem.

  4. September 3, 2013 at 11:24 am

    Thank you so much for throwing down this challenge!

    I did it – and managed to write 31 posts! It was hard, but such a great exercise. I suck at writing ahead of time and scheduling posts, so it required that I actually write every day. Very very good for me, and I loved seeing what others did.

  5. September 3, 2013 at 11:24 am

    Luvvie, this is a very encouraging post, and you are so right. The key is to WRITE. Period. There’s nothing new. Just put your voice out there and know that there is an audience that will hear it. Keep doing you..

  6. September 3, 2013 at 12:09 pm

    Thanks for this! I’ve been down on myself lately for not blogging much at all. I did three days of the challenge. THREE!!! So horrible. I wrote a post about me not writing as much. I’ll definitely link this post as inspiration.

  7. September 3, 2013 at 12:50 pm

    I’m still singing your praises for this challenge. I was SUCH the slacker previously but this got me to thinking on a regular basis about things I could post about. I started putting more structure around my blogging and even found myself feeling like I NEED to do it now even though the challenge is over. I got 29 posts up. Missed 2 days but I jumped back on like you said and kept it pushing. THANK YOU AGAIN!

  8. September 3, 2013 at 12:57 pm

    I enjoyed this challenge. I did not do all 31 days but I was challenged to be more creative and it also made me want to finally clean up the format of my blog. It was also cool to learn about new bloggers.

    Thanks Luvvie for this cool challenge!

  9. September 3, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    I did 16 posts for August after deciding to do the challenge. Unfortunately I only shared about two of them…

    But I did find some good reads.

  10. September 3, 2013 at 1:50 pm

    Hi Luvvie! I participated and I did complete 31 blogs. It was hard but fun. I found a lot of new blogs to read and writers to follow on twitter. I did receive an influx of traffic via the hashtag which is always a great thing. It was a great experience.

  11. September 3, 2013 at 2:13 pm

    I did all 31 days! It was fun and challenging. Thank you for the inspiration.

  12. September 3, 2013 at 3:26 pm

    This was a great challenge and I’m glad I took part. I didn’t complete 31 posts but I enjoyed writing when I had the time. I do agree with you about writing right there and then. I have some draft posts that may never see the light of day because I’m like, meh! But I might go back at some point and see if I can recapture the feeling.

    Thanks for the challenge Luvvie, my traffic did increase and I’m sorta developing a regular writing habit.

  13. Kisha
    September 3, 2013 at 5:41 pm

    I finished 26/31 days. I had about 6 days with no internet (#DADT)so I couldn’t really do what I wanted. But I felt great about the ones that I did. I picked up many more followers, took time to follow some blogs that appealed to me, and I really pushed myself to write something every day even if it sucked.

  14. September 3, 2013 at 10:17 pm

    […] a friend just started and blog and asked for feedback and pointers. I’m going to send her Luvvie’s post from earlier today. It was pretty reads my life as it relates to writing and blogging. This thing […]

  15. September 4, 2013 at 8:22 am

    Thanks for encouraging us, Luvvie. There are four of us writing for our blog and this challenege pushed us to write every day and we each pitched in to make that happen. It happened organically, no one needed to be prodded to do it and we got some great content from yet. We never missed a day. Our numbers went up by the thousands.

    Thank you!

  16. September 4, 2013 at 7:28 pm

    i actually managed 31/31, even though a few of them were cop-outs and/or “i’m tired but i’m posting this anyway” type of entries. my traffic went up a bit, but i think that’s due to the fact that i was tweeting every single link i posted, which is not my usual m.o.

    thanks again for this challenge, luvvie! 🙂

  17. September 4, 2013 at 11:40 pm

    I #FAILED big time. I kept telling myself tweeting = blogging and counted toward #31writenow. I’ll try it this month. Wake me up, when September ends…

  18. September 5, 2013 at 11:50 pm

    I think I missed 7-9 days of it, but it was fun trying to keep up! It got me loving to blog again…besides stealing innernets whereever I could to get the challenge done lol, I think promoting the posts I did do on my IG, Twitter and FB threw me off a little bit. My traffic definitely improved though and I got more follows and likes, that’s for sure! Thanks for posting this challenge…and now I must go write 7-8 album reviews for my blog lol

  19. September 7, 2013 at 9:54 pm

    i actually did!
    im so proud of myself!!!
    now, i didn’t necessarily WRITE every day (some were poems, i had already written), but between a baby and a 5 day trip out of country..my schedule game had to be on point.

    checking the hashtag for encouragement was great. there were some STRUGGLE days. STRUGGGGGLEEEEEE!!!!

    but for me..it was about the challenge of posting every day.
    i didn’t get the views i was expecting, but august is vacation month for many (and back to school).

    it was lots of fun. but im not doing that again. lol.

  20. September 8, 2013 at 11:13 pm

    While I participated, I resulted in a major fail. I think I tried to do to much due to the fact that i was blogging everyday on two blogs. I was basically trying to go to 0 to 100 in record time. After beating myself up over it, I am now at a place where I am going to focus on the journey and not necessarily the end result. Also I need to create writing a posting as a habit as well as posting quality material. Therefore the one thing the challenge taught me is that consistency is the key to forming a habit and I need to start slow so I will focus on one post a week for the reminder of the year.

  21. September 9, 2013 at 6:04 pm

    I was VERY surprised that I managed to get 31 days up! Between working full time and dealing with my toddler, I don’t know how I did it! But it wasn’t as hard as I thought. And I actually had more to share/write about than I thought! Thanks for the challenge!