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Review of the "30 Hubs in 30 Days" challenge, and how I hobbled towards the finish line.
How I came about doing the challenge.
Back in March of this year, I decided to do a personal challenge here on Hubpages. I decided to attempt to write 10 hubs over a 10 day time span. I know this may sound fairly simple for many writers here on Hubpages. Heck, I'm pretty certain that some of the more talented writers on here can easily write 10 hubs in a single day. I've yet to be able to obtain that level of talent or commitment, and I honestly doubt if there will become a time where I will. Creating this personal challenge was a test to see if I could attract more viewers to my writing. Before embarking on this minor journey, I asked in the forums if anyone wanted to go through it with me. One member named Karen Hellier was willing to join me, and I'm grateful that she agreed. Upon completing the 10 hubs in 10 days, I did notice an uptick in my views. However, the most significant upside would come from the friendship formed with Karen from the challenge. This is what lead to me doing the "30 hubs in 30 days" challenge.
Getting the ball rolling.
After Karen brought the idea of the "30 hubs in 30 days" challenge to me in April, we agreed to start the challenge in June. In an attempt to make the challenge more motivational, fun, and encouraging, we invited other members to do the challenge with us. There were several other writers whom happily agreed to take this step. If I remember correctly, there were eleven of us in total doing the challenge. Have others doing the challenge with me gave me an added sense of purpose to finish. When this plan was concocted back in April, I began writing down ideas for things that I wanted to write about for the challenge. I grabbed my tablet, and allowed the brainstorming to begin. The ideas began to flow, which led to me gaining more confidence in myself to complete the journey. When June 15, 2012 rolled around, I felt as if I was as prepared as possible to conquer this mission. The only real concern I had was the quality aspect of writing during the challenge. I'm the type of person who prefers quality over quantity when it comes to most things, and I somewhat worried that the quality of my writing would take a hit while attempting to put out a significant amount of hubs. At any rate, I tried to approach this challenge like the approach that I take towards life. I tried viewing it as a marathon and not a sprint.
The challenge begins.
The challenge officially began on a Friday. I know for a fact that I had written and turned out a hub on that day. This marked one hub down, and 29 more to go. I decided to not write anything that particular weekend, and I picked it back up that following Monday. I had decided that my approach would be to write throughout the week, and allow the weekends to be the time to brainstorm more ideas. Sounds like a good pretty good strategy right? WRONG! At least for me it wasn't a good strategy. Looking back now, I believe this was one of the biggest mistakes I made during the challenge. Hindsight is 20/20 and if I could go back and do it again, I would have done things differently. I say this because I quickly looked around and noticed that there were only seven days left before the challenge was due to end. Time flies when you're having fun right? Knowing that there were only seven days left would probably make a lot of people happy, but I was far from happy knowing that I still had 10 hubs left to write. 10 hubs in a seven day time span? Unfortunately, this was the scenario that I was facing. I knew now was the time for me to tighten up my chin strap, and bite down on my mouthpiece if I wanted to finish this task. Yes I did use a football reference. However, writing can be a competition too right?
Hobbling towards the finish line.
For the final seven days of the challenge, I decided to write a least one hub per day, while starting on another one to be finished the next day. The goal was to be able to put out two hubs every other day. Despite these attempts, I looked around on the last day and still had four hubs to finish. I had one hub that was a draft I had been previously working on. I decided to finish it up and get it published early that Saturday. Later on in that evening, I wrote a brief hub that took maybe an hour and a half to do. As the midnight deadline began to approach, I still had two hubs that needed publishing in order to finish up. I finished up hub number 29 around 30 minutes before midnight. With one hub left to do in 30 minutes, I decided to publish a hub that had been saving for over a month. Getting this hub in before midnight concluded the challenge for me. However, a few days following the challenge, the final hub in the challenge ended up being unpublished for various reasons. This marked the first time ever that anything I had written was unpublished here on Hubpages. It was somewhat of a hit to my pride, but I can't blame anyone but myself. If I would have prepared properly, I would not have had to resort to publishing a poorly put together hub.
Thoughts and reflections.
Doing the "30 hubs in 30 days" challenge definitely had its share of pros and cons. While doing the challenge, I definitely noticed an increase in my views -- which was definitely an encouraging sign. I also managed to make a new set of friends on here, which is probably the most positive thing that came from doing the challenge. The interaction between most of us was great, and it allowed us to help keep one another motivated. Although I saw an increase in my views along with newly acquired friends, I doubt that I will do 30 hubs in 30 days again. I really do feel that the quality of my writing took a hit while doing this challenge. I don't blame the challenge itself, I put the blame on myself. I should have had a better strategy on how to get through this challenge. I recently took a look in my tablet that I had written ideas down in, and I noticed that I didn't even use several of them. In addition to feeling my quality taking a hit, my creativity took a hit as well. See I'm a firm believer that creativity shouldn't have time constraints. I feel that it should flow naturally, which means that we shouldn't force ourselves to write. Normally I write whenever something significant comes to mind. I personally feel that this is the best way to approach writing. However, what ticks for one person may not work so well for the next. I never like to say I won't do anything, so I'll leave some room available just in case I decide to do the challenge again in the future. Even though I hobbled towards the finish line in this race and had my final hub unpublished, I'm still glad that I took on the challenge. It was definitely a big learning experience. I plan on using the knowledge that I acquired from this experience, and hopefully apply it to my future writing endeavors. Special thanks to members: Karen Hellier, beingwell, Redberry Sky, and SusieQ42 for doing the challenge, along with the constant contact and support. For anyone who is considering doing the challenge, my best advice would be to develop a game plan, and stick with it. Thanks for reading.