Today is the first day of National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo as it’s known to its chums. While several of my friends spend the month of Movember growing moustaches in the name of raising awareness about cancers affecting men, I will be endeavouring to bang out 50,000 words of a novel.
The basic principle is this – most of us believe we Have A Book In Us. It’s one of those givens in life isn’t it? At some point in our lives we’ve all thought we could be the next J K Rowling. We just can’t be bothered. The aim of NaNoWriMo then isn’t to create a masterpiece, or to spend hours a day carefully crafting sentences, it is just to write, to make the time to sit down and actually get some words on a page. It doesn’t matter how good they are, it’s a matter of quantity rather quality, creating the habit of writing rather than thinking about writing and then getting tired and watching repeats of CSI instead. On the website, you can create a profile, monitor your progress, and link up with other writers. You can even share your work if you are feeling brave.
This week I had an interview for a job. Although I haven’t been actively looking for a permanent job, I have been feeling a tad lonely working at home, and was thinking it would be nice to have some new work friends, a reason to wash my hair every day, and someone else to make my coffee now and again. So when this opportunity came along, and I was asked if I would be interested in applying, I thought I should go for it.
I’ve always enjoyed job interviews, with much the same perverse pleasure that I get from exams. At heart I am a over-competitive, under-confident exhibitionist. It sounds like an odd combination, but it isn’t really – I love being marked, being praised, and I strive to do well so that people will tell me how clever I am.
This week, one of my favourite bloggers, Mommy has a Headache, tagged me in a post, asking me to come up with my recipe for a perfect man – the top ten things I look for in a potential partner. As she pointed out, it could be great advertising after all. If you can tick seven or more, please invite me out for dinner.
I fully appreciate of course that my Mr Right will very likely match up to none of these things. I have been in a flighty mood this week though, so I was glad of an excuse not to do some real work. So, here goes:
Generally, I am pretty liberal-minded when it comes to eating and drinking. I will eat food I drop on the floor at home, happily eat left over pizza for breakfast, lick sambuca off another woman’s breast etc etc
On Sunday though, I had a drink related incident that turned even my stomach.
I was sitting in the cafe at the gym, enjoying a cup of coffee and reading a book. Before you all howl in disbelief, I will clarify that I wasn’t actually there EXERCISING. Heaven forbid. No, I was just sat waiting for Belle while she was swimming with her Dad.
I was sat at the kitchen table at nine o’clock this morning, minding my own business, making my way through my second cup of coffee of the morning, when a new email pinged into my inbox.
“Morning Jo!” said the subject line.
“Morning email!” I thought to myself.
The email was from the producer of a programme on BBC Radio Kent, asking if I would be available to comment on a story in The Daily Mail today about whether or not it is OK to ask people to take their shoes off when they come into your house. Clearly someone has been spreading rumours about my lack of enthusiasm for housework and my generally filthy carpets.
This evening I have been listening to The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.
There are certain songs or albums that always trigger memories for me. I can’t listen to Tap on my Window for instance without thinking of a certain man, and if I hear Run DMC vs Jason Nevins, It’s Like That, I’m 19 again, getting ready for a night in a crappy club, drinking peach schnapps.
Lauryn Hill reminds me of a particular time during my second year of university. I was 20 years old, a single mum of a three-year-old, commuting two hours a day to get to lectures. I didn’t get to do any of the social stuff, or even really get to hang out much, so there was very little opportunity for any sort of drunken debauchery.
However, I had my eye on a boy…