As my decision to participate in NaNoWriMo and the outlining of my story was taking shape, assassins (allegedly Taliban-backed) in Pakistan took a couple of shots at a fourteen year old girl who has had the temerity to demand, expect and work towards girls’ rights to an education.
Malala is still in hospital and she looks to be quite the little warrior, as her meds have been reduced and she appears to have full mobility. I’m not sure whether this speaks to her sheer will to survive or the ineptitude of the shooter.
Then Pat Bagley had this brilliant editorial cartoon published in the Salt Lake Tribune and it began a new thread in the conversation about religion and extremism.
The question was posed by a friend, “Gotta wonder why educated girls are such a threat?”
Oh, I know why.
Educated girls become the most powerful evangelists to a cause because they often become educated moms, teachers, and mentors. One educated girl is the equivalent of an atomic bomb against tyranny because the effects of her wisdom multiply exponentially and can cause the power structure, the status quo, to collapse completely.
One girl can change the world.
And with 16 days to go, the theme for my NaNoWriMo novel solidifies just like that! A casual conversation (well, casual is an understatement) can fuel your muse just as a song can do it, a poem, a smell…
I have no clear ending in mind. I hope it is uplifting, but it may not be a happy one.
To win NaNoWriMo all I need is 50,000 words. I can do that. It’s not always easy, but it is always doable. The only question is whether at the end of those 50,000 (or any additional) words the reader will close the book (or the app) and think, “One girl can change the world!”