As many thousands of other NaNoWriMoists begin their first WordPress blogs, I feel distinctly unoriginal in beginning mine.
Writing 71,529 words of a very rough, first draft in twenty-three November days that went by in a silver blur of keyboard blindness and numb fingertips was a useful lesson in ignoring my inner critic. It means I am now, like many others, able to honestly call myself a writer again. Too many years have flown by since I made any serious attempt to write (a) a novel or (b) anything much other than emails, Facebook and Twitter statii, or odd jottings when we were away in the motorhome and I had some creative flashes I couldn’t resist.
Those last have not come to nothing. From their small beginnings when I sat with my laptop at certain sporting events around the country, on ferries, in aircraft, and on those odd motorhoming holidays to France and Norfolk, those notes kept being written. Some were lost, some found, and some finally came good as I bore them in mind during NaNoWriMo.
I now have a very rough draft of something that claims to be a thriller but I believe is probably more contemporary fiction. I have leaned very heavily on the myriad experiences of my life – and shamefacedly robbed character ideas from anyone who may ever have ventured near my path.
My journey has never been a straight one. I don’t think I could have coped with a life that hopped successfully from birth to achievement to triumph to death. Mine has staggered round in rather the same way as I speak. My blog is entitled Very Tessa Tangent for a reason.
My husband, Paul, coined the term for me because when we very first went out and were talking, it seemed, endlessly for at least a year, I would always go diverging off the original subject into wildly unrelated areas. One moment we’d be discussing, say, musical tastes, reggae, Motown and so on. Then I would veer off into making comments about, say, breeze blocks. “Woah,” he would say. “You’re off again, Tessa Tangent!”
That’s just the way I am. The way I think, speak, write and live. And I’ve always loved the nickname Paul gave me. Hence the name for my blog. My blog posts are almost certain to go off at tangents, too. I’m surprised I’ve stuck mainly to the thread of my point here.
Often, I find that though I may start off on one subject, I may careen into other areas so much that I find myself somehow led back quite naturally in this method to the original subject. That’s the way my life has gone, too.
When I get the hang of WordPress, don’t hold your breath on this, I’ll be posting up some of my written work. I find it helps to have at least one young techno-savvy and willing son to hand.
Or I might start building this blog before he comes to advise me on theme, content and probably a change of title. I could build it with the breeze-blocks of thought I have lying around, laying a foundation. There. I knew I’d find a use for that tangent.