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  • KDW Ferrell

Putty Peeps Diaries - You Are Gonna Do What in November?

November, the month of thanks, antacids and house fires from burning turkeys. It is the month of  pumpkin flavored everything because you have to use the left over Halloween pumpkins. It is the first real snow fall of substance, the end of Indian Summer and the start of the holiday season. Personally, this little Peep cannot wait until holiday music is blasting from every street corner.

November is also the month where the intrepid, the brave, the I-always-bite-off-more-than-I-can-chew take part in a thing called NANO. At first when I heard the buzz in the coffee shop around NANO I thought it was a political resistance movement. Secret meetings are planned all over the country. Schedules are synced across time zones so that everyone starts at the same time. Sit ins are planned for each region. My little putty ears were perked and my interest was piqued and so I did what every good NSA wanna be would do, I listened in on the conversations.

Much to my surprise NANO is not a political resistance movement, no Berets and bandoliers are forthcoming. Instead NANO stands for National Novel Writing Month. I know anti-climatic right? Although if you think about it, writing a book--defined as 50,000 words--in 30 days is a movement. Depending on what people write it could be political. It could also be a resistance movement. This made me think. What if I, a lowly Putty Peep wrote a book, what if I penned 50,000 words on life as I know it, would that be a political statement?

What if everyone sat down and over the course of 30 days distilled their political philosophy? What if they took the time each day to review their manifesto? What if they spent the time to actually think about what they think, would they change their own minds? Would they sit down and research their thoughts, would they stand by their beliefs, could they support their convictions? I wonder how many would get to 10,000 and call it good or 20,000 and say they have nothing more to say, or 30,000 and say that is all there is and there ain't no more.

For those that took the time to write 1667 words per day (the recommended NANO average) would they change their own minds? Or would they simply repeat over and over like lines on a chalkboard - I am right, You are wrong and that is all you need to know? Would the act of writing down what they believe force them to consider those beliefs?

I think this could go both ways. People of faith might grow stronger in their faith and find a new-found level of commitment to the ideals of their faith. People who believe in humans and not a higher omniscient being might reconsider their place in the Universe and look for a deeper meaning. People who are on the fence might find an argument that sways them one way or the other. Perhaps this exercise would stop people of all faiths, beliefs and callings from hanging those who are different on a fence. Perhaps this exercise would force everyone to stop and think about why they believe what they believe and more importantly why others do not believe as they believe and why that is okay.

I realize that is a lofty goal for one who rolls around from coffee shop to coffee shop in a metal tin but it is a fascinating idea. So folks to help get you started on your NANO project to write out your personal manifesto in 50,000 or more here are some random things to get your started.

Random first line: He had made a poor job of hiding the damage.

Random subject: Write about moving home.

Random plot : A woman in her early seventies, who is labeled as dishonest.

A man in his early seventies, who can be quite jealous.

The story begins in a city street.

A family celebrates a homecoming.

It's a story about a journey.

Your character reluctantly becomes involved.

Random dialogue: "Move away from the door and let me at him."

Random Scenario: You're a private investigator taking photos of someone who spots what you are doing. What happens next?

Generate three nouns: justice, train, watch.

So there are my suggestions. I plan on finishing out the month with my first portion of my manifesto using these prompts.

Feel free to post your ideas on this blog.

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