Thursday, March 29, 2012

Gearing Up for the A-Z Challenge

April is nearly upon us, which means it will soon be time to dive into the deep end of the blogosphere: the April A-Z Challenge. I've been both excited and terrified of this ever since I signed up for it. If you're unfamiliar with the challenge, the gist is this: in the month of April, participants vow to post a blog entry every day except Sundays. Each entry will correspond with a letter of the English alphabet, starting with the letter "A" on April 1st.

I've given a lot of thought to my participation in the challenge, compiling an alphabetic list of topics that might be suitable fodder. In doing so, I realized I had a broad enough selection to narrow the list down into themed entries if I wanted to. So after a bit of meditation and mediation, I've decided that my A-Z entries will be themed around speculative fiction tropes.
What is Speculative Fiction?

Speculative fiction, to put it as broadly as possible, is fiction that deals with the fantastic. The genres most commonly associated with the term are Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror. Most of my writing (and a great deal of the works I admire) falls under the former two.

What are Tropes?

Originally, the word trope referred to the use of figurative language in a literary work. Over the past few decades, however, the word has come to denote the use of a commonly recurring motif, plot device, or character archetype. For instance, J.R.R. Tolkien is widely regarded as the father of many common High Fantasy tropes, such as the fantastic races of Elves, Dwarves, and Orcs in The Lord of the Rings. Though he was drawing on myths and folklore for inspiration himself, his work was so influential that many fantasy works across books, film, and video games have used the Middle-earth mold to shape their own work.

So for the month of April, my blog will be devoted to exploring tropes and their use in speculative fiction of all mediums. I'll touch on some of my favorite examples, the many works in which they've appeared, and how I may have approached them in my own. Blogging this regularly is very new to me, so this is going to be tough. But with your encouragement (wink, wink), I just might get through this. I'll also be dropping by and lending support to as many of my fellow A-Zers as I can this month. I hope to read a lot of interesting new blogs and meet a lot of awesome new people. 

The next time you hear from me, I'll be on a mad dash to "Z." Should be lots of fun getting there.


  1. Sounds like a great theme, especially as that's the genre I write.

    1. Thanks, Alex! SpecFic is pretty much my specialty, too. Hope you like it!

  2. You've got a plan and that's a good thing. Have a great time in April.

    Sad Songs Blogfest (I’m a day early I know)
    A Faraway View
    An A to Z Co-host blog

  3. Looking forward to April. I've seen "tropes" here and there, but never knew what it

    Thanks for the education! :D

  4. Sounds like an interesting theme. X shouldn't give you much problem, that's for sure. I'm still trying to figure out my Awesome Lady Writer for that particular letter, though... suggestions from spec-fic?

    1. Nothing springs to mind, though I know there are a few Chinese authors with names beginning with X! I'm sure some of them are awesome ladies.

      Thanks for stopping by, Laura!

  5. I'm in too! I'm stopping by from today's A-Z challenge post. It's almost time! I'm following :)


Thanks for reading!