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I’m not in need of some help against a police dog looking for nefarious substances that I have hidden in my car, but what I do have is a need for 100 people. So far, I’ve got one.

Then again, it’s early days.

What am I on about?

Back in 2012/13, I did a project with balloons, which I left all over London. They helped tell a connected story. It was loads of fun to do, even if tying balloons in the freezing February wind wasn’t quite what I’d signed up for when I decided to do it.

Fast forward to September 2014 and I received a request to do a second set of balloons, this time with sponsorship. And while that sponsorship is no longer happening, the concept for this next iteration of the project hasn’t shifted. It’s just been delayed.

A No.1 song from Nena
I woke up this morning to an email. Someone has requested to be part of the project. Which is great. Releasing things on a Sunday night is never a good thing; of course, I knew that. But still, one person wanted in.

I still have 99 red balloons (yes, they are red) to release. Hence the Nena reference.

One Hundred Stories
One of these could be yours. And the chance to pass a story on to a stranger.

Here’s a recap of what this project is about: I’ve written 100 short stories, printed them out via my Little Printer, and I will be sending them out to people around the world to read. They will be given the story, a balloon with a red ribbon, and a printed card. This card is important.

Those who get a balloon have to give it away to a stranger along with the balloon itself. This recipient can get in touch, should they wish to, and I will write them a story all of their own.

That’s 100 stories to send, and — if I take a moment to kid myself — 100 new stories to write.

Would you like a story?
It’s not a difficult process. You just need to visit the One Hundred Balloons website and follow the instructions. Maybe give the Twitter feed a follow, as I’ll be updating the project through that. If I get more than 100 people requesting a story, I’ll pick names at random and get in touch. It feels like a big ask, but it’s fewer than 10% of my Twitter followers. And if you know someone who might want to receive a story, pass this one.

Then, it’s just a case of how quickly the Royal Mail can get them to their destination. I would hope that the sending of the balloons can be completed before Christmas. What better than to give a gift of a story to someone.

So, get involved. Be good to hear from you.

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