Or, How to become a blogger in 6 easy steps.
This is how I did it, anyway!
1 Learn how to read
At the age of 6, I discovered the Secret of Life: I didn’t need my mother to read ‘Janet and John and Spot’ to me, I could read it all by myself! Since that day, I have been an unstoppable reader. Reading fuels my mind and energises my soul.
2 Fall in love with writing
My favourite school subject was English, especially the creative writing part. I discovered that it was almost as much fun to write my own stories as it was to read other people’s. I found it easy to create imaginary worlds and populate them with people who seemed more real than the people around me. I became fascinated with poetry. The structured formats of the sonnet and the villanelle were a pleasure to puzzle out.
3 Let life lead you astray
I dropped writing when I left school and studied the sciences instead, and later on went into IT and asset management. I didn’t have time for writing, except the boring stuff that my job required – management reports, proposals, ‘how to’ documents to capture knowledge of the systems that I was using, and endless emails. Occasionally I would be inspired by some life event to write a poem, but I didn’t develop a regular practice of writing.
4 Have a crisis
Then, a life crisis – a job and a career ending, what to do next? I decided to follow the advice that pops up all over the internet and follow my heart, and enrolled on a writing course. This year, I’m studying the Diploma in Writing for the Creative Industries at NMIT, which has given me the chance to experiment with many different writing styles and genres, and has enabled me to develop a habit of daily writing.
5 Take inspiration from loved ones
I’m following in the footsteps of many of my family members. My father wrote poetry and short stories and co-authored a book with the Springbok rugby hero, Naas Botha. My aunt wrote a cookery book. My grandmother published 44 novels and her sisters were also published authors. My son is a campaigner for climate justice and writes blog posts and opinion pieces in the course of his work. It’s about time I started making my own voice heard!
6 Just start writing
So, here I am setting up my first blog site, my first step into making that happen. I’ll be writing about the opportunities for a writer to get their work published in Aotearoa New Zealand, with particular reference to the Nelson-Tasman area. It will be an exploration and a learning experience for me.
I hope you’ll come along with me!