Last week I took advantage of the blogging challenge Bloggiesta Ole to do some housekeeping on my story time blog site, Loons and Quines.
|Bloggiesta Ole finish line|
I have discovered that gamification does seem to act as a motivator for me, and even if I’m mistaken about that, it at least makes monotonous tasks more fun, more so where there is also a social element. I set myself a few tasks to bring the book review parts of the blog up-to-date, being too late to sign up for any of the mini challenges.
The exercise wasn't a complete success in terms of completing the tasks that I'd set myself however, mainly because I'd left myself insufficient time by leaving it until Sunday to get started (the challenge ran from Friday to Sunday of that weekend). So, lack of time, unrealistic expectations of what I could manage in a few hours and then a technical hitch over the embedding of tables into a blog page meant that I carried work on the challenge over to Monday.
Time was that I saw myself as a bit of an HTML wizard, but the blogging platform Blogger does do some strange things to HTML code (even while the editing window is still open) and had me beaten. The upshot was that I was unable to place summary tables of my reading challenges where I wanted them on the Reading Challenge page and whilst fiddling around with the code inadvertently took out the spaces between all the items in the reading lists, rendering them into unreadable blocks of text. To fix them I had to recreate and rename pages several times over. Finally I managed to restore the entire list and the challenge data, albeit over 3 pages, rather than the original one.
Ultimately I didn't complete all of my to do list in the original timeframe. However, I have most of them completed now, just one week late. The data on the pages is all up to date and I'm pleased with my progress with the reading challenges now that I can see the results. Additionally, I have made a desicison NOT to keep up with the blogging part of the reading challenges. The benefits I gain from the challenges are gained whether I post a blog about the books or not. I've found myself posting articles that are not as engaging or as interesting as I would like in the interest of getting a post online to add to the blog roll, a case of the tail-wagging the dog. By not posting I will both save myself some time and (hopefully) maintain better quality articles on my blog. Perhaps I've gained something valuable from the experience after all!