occasionally updated blog

  • NiProWriMo 27/30: Chicken With Its Head Cut Off

    Two quick list, maybe 45 seconds each:

    1. What is your favorite activity?
    2. What injuries have you endured?  

    (you may or may not use these, but they might be useful to marinade on)

    There is a something about that expression that has always fascinated me. Perhaps it’s the visual of a frantic and frenetic chicken running in circles sans what I think of as a vital part of its anatomy. Perhaps it’s the full body memory (the smell of the fire, the sound of the wire fence and my great grandmother’s feet shuffling in a packed dirt yard) of having the phrase explained to by a woman with an axe in her hand and a well-worn wooden stump in her yard.

    I think about the idea of clinging to life with such fervor that even science and the logic of your anatomy must bend to that will. I love the chicken in the story, am always rooting for it.

    Last week, I was talking to a friend about writing and The Walking Dead. That friend sent me these two pictures from the books, both of Andrea.

    Look at them.

    Look at how she stands and is not a woman to be dismissed.

    And then, here, look at her: in pain, shot.




    My friend sent these pictures in the other order. She was shot in the head and lived to fight on.

    Today, I want you to write about the thing that did not kill you (but maybe could have).

    While it’s not necessary, I encourage to take this to its symbolic or metaphoric height. Be absurd. Be surreal. Exaggerate. You, no matter what has happened, have lived to tell it.

    While the chicken and Andrea may seem the stuff of fiction, I came across this article a few weeks ago and have been thinking of it since: {here}

    So today, while you write, think of what you fight through/ have fought through/ are willing to fight through to live - even if it’s just long enough to finish doing something you love or are compelled by duty to do.  What have you clung to life to accomplish?

    I make things out of words. I could use your help.