tyler butler

NaNoWriMo 2005?

November is nigh upon me, but I don’t think I’ll be able to fully participate in NaNoWriMo this year like I did last year. Between the job and the working out, I’m simply not going to have the time for a 50,000 word novel this year. It really is a shame, since I had a couple of good ideas. Oh well, store them up for the future.

I am, however, considering trying to complete a short story during the month. I have a few ideas… They’re listed below, along with some possible quotes from the story and some pros and cons about doing one. After you’ve read the descriptions, vote for your favorite on the left of the site…

Sex, Drugs, and Polka

Description: A semi-autobiographical story about a guy who goes to college and deals with the overall college experience. He figures most of it out, but the fairer sex leaves him utterly confused – that is, until he meets her. (This makes it sound really cheesy – I don’t think it will be once I get it written.)

Possible excerpts:

“Years later he would think back in awe of the squander in which he now lived – but at this very moment, it was home, and a good one at that.”

“He had the fleeting thought that all men of his generation had. ‘Am I gay?’”

“In his heart he knew that what he really wanted was a meaningful relationship filled with trust, sacrifice, and love, culminating in marriage and a slow ride into the proverbial sunset of his later years with his beautiful bride; for now, though, he’d settle for a passionate make-out session in the corner with some girl whose name he wouldn’t remember tomorrow.”

Pros: Will give me a chance to get some of my college experiences out on paper (with some fictional embellishments, of course) before middle-age sets in and I forget it all. Plus, would be a lot of fun for my friends to read since they’ll probably make appearances.

Cons: Far too much for a short story – I doubt I’ll ever finish it once I start, because there’s too much material to work with.

The Hill

Description: A children’s story about friendship. A boy grows up with a hill in his back yard, and when he grows older, a construction company buys the property and threatens to flatten the hill, so the boy has to find a way to save it – or say goodbye.

Possible excerpts: Hmmm, I can’t find them right now… I know they’re somewhere…

Pros: I like to experiment with different styles (Mike’s character in Knot was an experiment with anger and rage), so it would be interesting to try my hand at a children’s story, with some simpler language and richer descriptions. The presence of a non-talking character (the Hill) would allow me to forgo dialog and focus more on description (one of my weaker points, I think).

Cons: Might be kind of boring, and difficult to prevent sounding cheesy or overly didactic. The core concept isn’t very original either.

The Children’s Democracy

**Description: **A lonely suburban writer suffers writer’s block until he starts to observe a group of kids around his housing complex. He writes about his observations about the way the children deal with each other socially and politically.

Possible excerpts: Probably the same place The Hill excerpts are… I’ll put them in here when I locate them…

Pros: Interesting concept to me, and I’d get to alternate between analytical essay-style writing, description, and dialog pretty easily with the characters.

Cons: Very little subject matter to use, since I don’t have too much interaction with kids. The idea is based on some run-ins I’ve had with some of the kids around my apartment complex, but I don’t think I have nearly enough material to keep this interesting.

Have another plot idea you think I should write about? Let me know…