Today is the last day of August and Blaugust 2019 is officially over for Later Levels. After plenty of planning, 31 articles, a whole lot of effort and a little bit of luck, I’m pleased to report we made it through our first blogging festival and are feeling quite proud of ourselves.
Thank you once again to Belghast from Tales of the Aggronaut for hosting this annual event and to Naithin from Time to Loot for bringing it to my attention. It would have been impossible to get through it alone so I must also thank Phil for returning to blogging and joining me in this adventure. The past month has been a challenge and it’s going to take a while to recover; but it’s also been a great experience, full of lessons to take into the future. Here’s what we’ve learnt from participating in our first Blaugust.
Asking for help isn’t a weakness
As mentioned above, it would have been incredibly difficult for me to manage a post every day this month by myself. A career change in July has been keeping me busy recently and fitting training into my spare time means fewer hours for blogging. As soon as Naithin tagged me in his article about Blaugust, I knew I wanted to take part – but I was also aware there was no way I was going to be able to make it through to the end of August on my own with only two weeks available for planning.
Later Levels (@LaterLevels) August 01, 2019
So, I reached out to Phil to ask if he’d like to team up. Together we could conquer the mountain of posts ahead and emerge victorious. Asking for help can be hard but it isn’t a sign of weakness; it’s one of intelligence, knowing what your strengths are and having amazing people around you that you can trust. The teammates who supported, readers who cheered, mentors who encouraged and partners who cared – you’re just as amazing as the Blaugust participants themselves.
Organisation and flexibility win the battle
Writing a post every day for a month when that workload is split between two people – sounds easy, right? Well, we’re now able to confirm that it’s not the case. A lesson we learnt very early on was that the effort involved in making it through this blogging festival was going to be a lot greater than we’d originally anticipated. I think we’d assumed that somehow it would just all work and the articles required would come together on time, but it turned out to be a lot more challenging than that.
Organisation and flexibility won the battle for us. Phil and I set up a shared spreadsheet so we could track who was posting on which days along with the subjects we were writing about; and when one of us was worried about not having an article ready to meet a deadline, we’d together to juggle the schedule around and come up with a solution. As stressful as it was sometimes, I can’t deny that the thrill of overcoming an obstacle and posting on time was kind of exhilarating.
Believe in yourself
As written above, I was well aware I was going to be unable to make it through Blaugust on my own this year. Teamwork makes the dream work and all that: it was fun tackling the event as part of a team and having someone there to bounce ideas off was very productive. But I won’t deny there’s a part of me that wonders what it would have been like to have completed the event by myself; I can imagine the sense of accomplishment felt by those participants doing so must have been huge.
Later Levels (@LaterLevels) August 24, 2019
Maybe for next year’s blogging festival we can look at taking the best from both worlds. Who knows: perhaps you’ll see two articles a day in August 2020 as Phil and I retain that cooperative aspect which seemed to work so well this time around, but attempt to write a post each. It’s certainly possible with a bit of planning. Blaugust has taught us that it’s important to know your limits and when you need to ask for help – but you also need to believe in yourself and take a risk every so often.
Well done to everyone who took part in the event this year. Regardless of how many posts you published throughout August, you’re all winners!