Last year I participated in Makeover Monday around 20 times. That’s not even 50% of the vizzes. This year I committed to not only submitting a viz every week, but to also write a blog post for each viz, find articles and data for 26 of the weekly challenges, write 26 weekly recap posts, and engage in the social media fun that comes with it: tweets, retweets, responses, messages, likes, sharing elsewhere and spreading the love.
Absolutely no regrets! Ever since week 1 it’s been great fun and I’m really enjoying it, because I get to be so much more involved in the community.
When I do something I find it easier to commit 100% or not at all. So doing every makeover for me is an easier commitment than saying ‘I’ll do the makeovers that look fun’ or just focusing on the topic that is easiest to visualise etc.
Joining Andy in running the project meant that I have made it part of my daily and weekly routine. Yes, there is a lot of ad hoc work, especially around Twitter, but certain tasks have a reasonably set schedule: Sunday is time to post the data. Doing it every 2 weeks means I can spend the ‘off’ weeks searching for good MM articles instead of preparing data. Sunday afternoon I usually spend doing my Makeovers because I don’t have time to do so at work on Mondays. Unless there is an opportunity to do a ‘Live Makeover Monday event’ like we did in London last week.
While I build my viz, I also draft the blog article that goes with it, including my critique of the original article and chart. Then it all gets published.
Once the data is out there, the real fun starts. Don’t get me wrong, I love building the vizzes and I also enjoy writing about the process, but the really fun aspect of this whole project is talking to you guys, the community, via Twitter about the submissions. It’s hard not to miss a submission as they come in very quickly on Sunday evening and then on Monday it’s a real deluge :-). But I love that. I wake up on Monday morning and my Twitter feed is full of vizzes, tweets and retweets from the Makeover Monday crew.
After getting through the first wave of that and eating some breakfast before I start work, everything starts humming at a more consistent pace and there are usually a number of discussions along the way. And of course as the week progresses we get to choose our favourites from all the submissions for our Friday recap blog post. In between Andy and I chat about Makeover Monday related stuff pretty much every day: new ideas for MM challenges, changes to the website, data we have found, interesting initiatives that would align with MM, potential live MM events, etc.
And then just like that it’s Friday, the second ‘hump’ of the week when we publish the recap post before settling into the weekend and gearing up for the next challenge to be released.
It’s a great project and I love being part of it. Compared to last year when I submitted vizzes every now and then (with a big hiatus over summer), this year my commitment has been much easier to maintain. Doing it every week is easier. It’s all or nothing. And that’s how I like it 🙂