Theme Reveal! #AtoZChallenge – 2017

Remember the time I told you about the girl I killed and buried so that another one could emerge in her place? One who looked and sounded like her, but was disdainful of all of the things the first one believed in?

Writing horror/gore comes easily to me not because I’m never scared, but the opposite. That’s my secret, Cap. I’m always scared; there’s always a boogeyman under my bed. It’s easy to write about the familiar. 

I have participated in the A to Z Challenge once before, in 2014. Afterwards, I was so drained that I swore, Never again! and quit writing for a month or so. And yet, here I am. For me, this year the challenge is not just about coming up with 26 different posts for each day of the month. It is about something else as well. The more challenging “unfamiliar territory”, if you will.

Last year, when I read around 80 books (which is the highest number for any single year that I’ve been reading) I read a lot of romance. One that stands out, and will definitely stand out for a long time, is The Lover’s Dictionary by David Levithan. When I read it, it seemed like a simple enough story of someone who had loved and lost. The events do not occur chronologically. The chapters are written in alphabetical order.

Later I realized I was wrong in much of my review. The more I thought about it, the cleverer the book seemed. It gives us glimpses of a relationship. These glimpses actually allow us to construct this relationship for ourselves. There is heartbreak, yes. The story is told from a single heartbroken point of view, also yes, but that is enough. The story is so beautiful. We’re given so little to work with and we end up creating and interpreting the rest.

All through these years, I’ve maintained that I cannot write romance. That it’s the most difficult genre for me to write. Romance isn’t easy to write because our emotions cannot always be captured in words. Which is why this minimalist technique (that looks deceptively simple, in spite of being complex) works in making the reader feel what isn’t expressed in words. In this case, the book definitely owes much to Levithan’s skill.


For this year’s A to Z Challenge, I’m going to attempt something similar in the genre that I have stayed away from ever since I buried the girl with the notebook. And I’m going to employ the technique that Levithan used in his book – of giving you brief snippets from the story with events occurring at random.

Wait, I’m not done. What’s the other thing that I like as much as I like books? Music. The posts will be named after alternative/indie/progressive rock songs – songs I’ve loved, liked, sang in the shower, cried to, being comforted by (and two classic rock songs that I hate (but they fit)). Because no story is complete without a good background score!

So here’s my theme: Minimalist Fiction (shall we add On the Rocks to that?)



58 thoughts on “Theme Reveal! #AtoZChallenge – 2017

  1. Chandnimoudgil March 20, 2017 / 12:13 AM

    Oh I love fiction and if your theme reveal is anything to go by .. I doubt your minimalist fiction would be anything but that !!
    I am expecting drama and fireworks from you and the idea of songs that defined you .. Totally sumptuous!! Can’t wait to read those posts And here’s toasting to a super April !

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 23, 2017 / 12:04 PM

      Hehe, the songs are there cos I thought if the posts aren’t good, then at least people can listen to the songs 😛


  2. jazzfeathers March 20, 2017 / 12:44 AM

    Sounds great. I’m always in owe of bloggers attempting stories during the AtoZ, I think this is one of the hardest things to do.
    I’ll watch this psace 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Louise March 20, 2017 / 2:45 AM

    Good luck on the challenge! I’m joining for the first time this year (but it’s not March 20 yet where I am so haven’t published my “reveal” post yet).

    This sounds like a fun idea!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 23, 2017 / 12:06 PM

      Thanks! It’s my second time this year. It’s gonna be fun, but I’m also nervous. Guess we’ll wait and watch 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Mithila Menezes March 20, 2017 / 8:41 PM

    Guess what? I guess we have a telepathic connection, because we both were reading each others posts at the same time 😀 💙

    Your theme is THE one to watch out for. I haven’t read the Lover’s Dictionary, but reading your description of it is making me go aha. I can’t wait for April to start, and this minimalist fiction journey to start on your blog!

    All the best Sreesha ❤😘

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 23, 2017 / 12:08 PM

      Oh you should totally read that book!! Not even in one chapter he gives you the whole picture of what’s going on, nor is any of it in order. But the way it progresses, wow!

      Thanks! All the best to you too ❤


  5. Reprobate Typewriter March 21, 2017 / 6:53 AM

    Minimalist fiction sounds like a great theme, and a great experiment. Can’t wait to find out how it works for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 23, 2017 / 12:09 PM

      It’s an experiment all right. I just wish I can do justice to it. 🙂


  6. lifestyleproblog March 21, 2017 / 12:22 PM

    Oh my God… that is so so creative and must be so hard to do!!!! All the best… I amlooking forward to reading this…. all the best 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 23, 2017 / 12:10 PM

      It is hard, and it’s making me real nervous, making me question if this whole idea was a mistake 😥 It requires a level of finesse I’m pretty sure I don’t have. At this point, I’m open to failure though; at least I tried, right? 🙂

      Look forward to your visits!


  7. shalzmojo March 21, 2017 / 12:31 PM

    Sounds like quite a treat for book/fiction lovers! Boookmarking your site for further reads. all the best gorgeous!
    cheers 🙂


    Liked by 1 person

  8. Tina Basu March 21, 2017 / 2:05 PM

    fiction and music sounds wow. All the best for the challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 23, 2017 / 12:12 PM

      Yes, you simply must read that book! The way it grows on you, it’s unbelievable. When I read it first, while I liked it, I think a part of me dismissed it for being YA. But then these little snippets formed the whole in my head and I was blown away!


  9. Vidya Sury March 22, 2017 / 11:59 AM

    80 books is great! I am very much looking forward to your posts, Sreesha, you angel! Hugs! Intriguing theme. I did consider writing posts with song names or book titles but with the state of my “affairs” right now, I decided to keep it simple!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 23, 2017 / 12:15 PM

      I understand. But given how beautifully you write, no theme can be labeled too simple – it’ll be a pleasure to read either way! 🙂 Lots of hugs!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 23, 2017 / 12:15 PM

      Hehe, the songs are to deflect attention away from the story – if you don’t like the story you can always enjoy the music 😀 😛


  10. Maggie March 22, 2017 / 8:04 PM

    Oh, what a fun theme! I love books that jump around, but still make sense! I’ve never read Levithan, but I’m very curious to do so! Have an awesome challenge! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 23, 2017 / 12:19 PM

      His books are wonderful! I never used to read romance, but after reading the Lover’s Dictionary, I picked up four (or five? I forget!) more books of his. Beautiful, beautiful writing. Only he could’ve accomplished what he did in that book (the form I’m trying to imitate, and setting myself up for failure, but anyway :D)

      Liked by 1 person

    • Maggie March 23, 2017 / 12:33 PM

      LOL! I’ll definitely check out his stuff! You’ll do great! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Suzy Que March 23, 2017 / 1:05 PM

    Fiction with music – that’s my kind of fiction All the best. Will look forward to your posts.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 27, 2017 / 9:36 AM

      Thank Suzy. Here’s to an exciting April! 🙂


  12. Lata Sunil March 24, 2017 / 9:50 AM

    Sreesha, can’t wait to read what you will do with it. It is most difficult to write simple stuff. I am holding my breath till you start.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 27, 2017 / 9:37 AM

      I’m so nervous, you have no idea. Don’t hold your breath – I have no confidence that I’ll do justice to it.
      I’m just gonna sit back, and wait and watch 😀

      Liked by 1 person

    • Lata Sunil March 27, 2017 / 9:42 AM

      Well, i would say just do it. When I started last year, I had no idea what I will write. I wrote the posts on the days of publishing or just a day before that. But I think I still surpassed myself as I forced myself to set aside time, think and write. I rewrote many times before hitting publish. It was also one of the busiest work months. All the best.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 27, 2017 / 10:22 AM

      I’ve written a few posts, cos my OCD won’t allow me to write on the day the post is due. But so many are still pending.
      Are you joining in this year?

      Liked by 1 person

    • Lata Sunil March 27, 2017 / 10:35 AM

      No.. as I am in God’s own country at the time. After many years, a month long holiday and I do not want to think about blogging. So, I will read the stories also late.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 27, 2017 / 9:38 AM

      Glad you liked it, Suchita! 🙂


    • Sreesha Diva March 27, 2017 / 9:38 AM

      That’s encouraging, Roma! Look forward to your visits 🙂


    • Sreesha Diva March 27, 2017 / 9:40 AM

      Courageous or foolish I wonder, cos I hit severe writer’s block when I try to think of posts these days! Thanks for the wishes, I need all the luck I can get 🙂 🙂
      Thanks for visiting! 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  13. pythoroshan March 24, 2017 / 9:42 PM

    Saved the site. Will be back as April begins 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 27, 2017 / 9:42 AM

      I’ll look forward to your visits, Doc 🙂


  14. Dipanwita March 25, 2017 / 8:57 PM

    Wow! Sounds interesting. All the best for the challenge. I too am writing on similar lines. Hope to read you more on this. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Diva March 27, 2017 / 10:20 AM

      Thanks! All the best to you too.


  15. swathishenoy March 28, 2017 / 1:39 PM

    I can just wonder how good the A to Z posts will be if this is what you write for the theme reveal! Looking forward to read your posts 🙂

    A to Z 2017 – Theme Reveal

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 1, 2017 / 10:07 PM

      Haha, maybe this one was a fluke 😀
      Here’s to a fun April! 🙂


  16. Soumya Prasad March 28, 2017 / 6:36 PM

    I love the theme as I know no one better than you to talk about love, loss, pain and more love. No, I’m not kidding! ❤

    I'll be back every day of April. You know I will 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Anmol Rawat April 7, 2017 / 1:15 PM

    Don’t tell me! When I read your submitted story for A Little Chorus of Love, I re-read it for how beautifully you had written. No way, I could have guessed that you are a horror writer. It is my favorite story from that anthology along with Soumya’s. You’re quite good at writing romance, trust me.

    It’s funny though, the coincidence. You write horror and you are trying romance for the challenge. I write romance and I am trying horror for the challenge. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sreesha Divakaran April 8, 2017 / 12:27 AM

      Haha, I don’t know if you know this, but when I was asked to submit a story for ALCOL, I’d point blank refused at first. Somehow never thought it was my cup of tea. That’s why I’m nervous about this little experiment of mine.

      Hey, that exact thought crossed my mind when I read a few of your posts. I knew you used to write romance before, and I was quite intrigued to see horror 😀
      I still haven’t caught up with your posts. By Monday, pakka!


    • Anmol Rawat April 24, 2017 / 2:40 PM

      No, I didn’t know that :-p Who asked you btw?
      And yes, it is your cup of tea definitely even if you don’t want to admit it.


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