A To Z Blogging Challenge 2017 Theme Reveal

Stranded!

Stranded! My 2017 April A To Z Blogging Challenge

Introduction

In 2014, when I first participated in the April A To Z Blogging Challenge, I said to myself, “I shall do this thing, but I shan’t allow myself to spend too much time on it each day.  It will be fun, and take about an hour.”  But things do not always go as we expect.  Soon, I found I was having LOTS of fun, and spending anywhere from 3 to 10 hours on my posts.  They are, by the way, glorious, and I highly encourage the reader to peruse them.  They are Classic British Mystery Themed Artificial Artifacts, and some of them are Extremely Amusing.  Here is my 2014 A; you ought to be able to click through the entries from there.

In 2015, I said to myself, “Now, Melanie.  Last year was fun, but it also ate your life.  Remember last year?  Right.  This year, really, do something simple.  Like dressing up in costumes.  Simple.  You do have an ungodly lot of clothes.  Put them to use.”  And so I found myself writing a 50,000 word novella, a mystery set in Edwardian England, told every day from a different character’s point of view.  I would also dress up as that character and include a picture with that day’s chapter.

It was like my own personal NaNoRiMo.

In April.

With costumes.

I spent anywhere from 6 to 18 hours a day on my posts that year.  The final product I called Alas!.  It is a thing of wonder and beauty, and I highly recommend it.  I don’t think I’d even decided who done it until like letter E, but all the clues work, and the solution, if a bit improbable, isn’t, I think, at all bad.  And the pictures are pretty good, too, I think.  I mean, I have to explain to people that, where there is only one person in a picture, that one person is invariably me (where there are two figures in a picture, the other person is my awesome and cooperative boyfriend).  I have organized Alas! into a gallery so that my weird costumes can conveniently be admired; to read a chapter, you just click on the character.  You can do that here.  I will wait.

In 2016, I decided to do another round of Artificial Artifacts, this time mostly horror-themed.  I knew it would eat my life, and it did, but that was fine.  I like making content for this blog (or blaugh), and, as I barely post anything for the rest of the year, I had, by 2016, come to think of April as “the month where I do literally nothing but generate content for my website.”  This makes some sense, though I don’t know how much sense it makes.  Also?  My 2016 A To Z is great.  I recommend that you read it as obsessively as I wrote it.  That does not, on reflection, make much sense, but I think you know what I mean.  Anyway, here is my 2016 theme reveal; you should be able to navigate through from there.

But!  This year, no really, I am determined not to spend gobs of time on my A To Z.  So it will, I hope, be awesome, but it won’t be super-involved, as it has been in years past.

AND NOW…

The Actual Theme Reveal

I love the old Strand Magazine.  A lot.  Especially the pictures.  So I am going to take pictures from old (not-in-copyright-I-seriously-hope) Strand Magazines, re-caption them, and arrange them in a story.  Or several stories.  The alphabet part will come in because the first letter of the first caption of each day’s installment will be the daily letter.  Does anyone else find it singularly difficult to talk about the technical aspects of the April A To Z Blogging Challenge clearly, by the way?  Anyway, I may do one continuous story through the month of April, but I think I will probably break off stories and continue them later, and in the meantime tell a new story, which will itself break off and be continued later.

See you in April!

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10 Comments

  1. So you are doing the challenge! I’m so happy, I always love all your story… and I know the work you put in, becuase it’s absolutely obvious.

    Can’t wait to read this new endeavour of yours.

    • Melanie Atherton Allen

      Hey Jazzfeathers! Thanks! I see, by the way, that you are doing a film noir-themed A to Z. Excellent! I can’t wait! Oddly enough, I once taught a class on film noir and neo-noir (my college had a program by which students and members of the community could apply to teach a class, and offer it for a small amount of college credit). I can’t wait to see your take on things!

  2. You always have such excellent themes. I’m really looking forward to this. Also, are we taking bets on how much time you actually end up spending per post? I’m thinking… 4-9 hours. 😉

    • Melanie Atherton Allen

      Thanks Sara! Oh dear… I don’t see how I could possibly end up spending that much time on this year’s A To Z, but, then again, I have been there before… maybe I’ll do a little time-log, showing how long I spent on each post… I think I can resist the temptation to just straight-up lie…

  3. I am so happy to return to your blaugh and find a ready reference to your past A to Z Challenges, and an introduction to this year’s. I adore your writing. It is charming and disarmingly amusing — nay, hilarious. I broke out in laughter at least four times while reading this post.

  4. Good morning, Atherton! I’ve found two more for the Cabal:

    Aditi’s Indian myths from a female POV at Aditi’s Pen (http://www.aditispen.com/2017/04/anjana-atozchallenge-aprila2z.html#more)

    Vanessa’s build-a-30-word-story at Vanessence (https://vanessence.wordpress.com/2017/04/01/atozchallenge-the-letter-a/)

    It isn’t clear at the moment whether the links in the site names have stayed attached, so I’ve provided the link to the “A” posts as well. Thanks for adding them to your list. I noticed Shailaja’s on yours and realized I had forgotten to put her info on my list even though I’d saved it to do just that. She’s on mine now, too. Thanks for the reminder.

  5. I’m intrigued by your topic so am starting to read today from A. At least I’m not too far behind!
    You are right about posts taking too much time. I get sucked in by all the new things I’m learning as I do research into a topic.

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