He who sports work boots and flannel.
Mows his lawn at night.
This is a character I’ve written about in two of my novels, Sleepwalkers and Psychic, and a short story, “Tail Gunner.” The Man With No Name (aka “MWNN”) is a character I had the idea for way back. He makes himself known through…well, interesting means, which I don’t exactly want to give away. I have at least one more novel planned for his appearance. It would be in line with the previous two mentioned books. And even then he won’t be finished with by any stretch. My intent was to have him pop up in various pieces of fiction—short stories and novels. A crossover character. I like that idea and it’s quite in keeping with what he does. When I wrote “Tail Gunner” it was cool how he seamlessly incorporated himself into the story (he was the carnival’s Ticket Taker). He got his second name, “Magic Man” when I’d been driving to work one morning and passed by this van with “Magic Man” on its side. It just fit.
Talking about “Tail Gunner”…it still affects me on a creepy level.
Every time I go to the gym and walk by that now-hurtful-decible-levels-screaming-music-for-Zumba/whatever room where I first met my tail gunner, I look to that overhead fan. Yesterday (as I originally wrote this post, May 14th) that fan was spinning in an empty room (it isn’t usually spinning in an empty room). My tail gunner must’ve known I was gonna write about this.
Anyway, back to the MWNN. He is perhaps the coolest character I’ve ever written. He gets around…knows stuff…is kinda Forrest Gumpish in a certain way (think “JFK”). And he hearkens back to some of my earliest writing (my fifth manuscript of the 12 in whole or in part in my novel-length repertoire; only five are/will-be published, counting my current WIP). Back to when I was hot and heavy into the dream of getting published. The “halcyon days,” if the term be used. I was literally in the middle of creating all these new manuscripts, one right after the other. I’d finish one…then uninterruptedly start the next one. It was a wildly creative part of my life and I loved it! Now, I’m going over previously created material and publishing the better of them. There is at least one other trunk-manuscript I’d love to rework and publish, my second manuscript, Village Idiot. We’ll see….
But, I digress.
As the MWNN is sometimes wont to do!
So, who is this man with no name?
Though his origins are detailed in Psychic, he’s very much a part of me…or I’m a part of him? He embodies a lot of how I like to think of my perfect self: wears flannel, jeans, and boots. Does what he wants, when he wants…by slightly funky means. Helps others out. Filters out the bullshit. Did I mention he wears flannel? Sometimes a trickster. Always has a sense of humor.
He explores places most people aren’t interested in going…or are afraid to.
He’s bad-ass enough without resorting to weaponry, martial arts, or whammy shots.
And I love that he mows his lawn and weeds his garden at night.
Drinks iced tea. Loves his iced tea.
He is…the best part of me.
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