Best of August 2012

Blogs, ands, buts and becauses
I dedicate this month to my blog since I am celebrating a mark pretty soon. I started it with a dream and I learned we cannot have only one dream or we shall live in permanent disappointment. In fact, I already had to discard two important dreams. Others will follow.

When I ask myself why I keep writing Tales From The Sea, I always come up with two consistent reasons: 1) The permanent process of learning a language that is not the one I use daily. 2) The description of moments of my life in a format close to journalism and accessible to everyone. Editing is not writing and even writing books is far from the immediate challenge of journalism or blogging.

I know I do silly mistakes. Using a second language is as risky as groping for something inside an unfamiliar dark room. Some time ago I regarded my writing as faulty because I keep using “and” “but” and “because” (this one phrase being a good example of my because-ism). The best recent present I received was finding a bestseller writer (one I admire for too many reasons) expressing herself through very simple structural forms. It gave me the confidence to embrace my but-ism and because-ism and pursue this weekly adventure.

If you are curious about some of those uplifting passages: “And then she started getting up even earlier because if she wanted to get out of this mess she was going to have to study for her A levels. If she got up at four in the morning – when everything was miraculously peaceful, even the birds and the baby – then she could prepare the evening meal, tidy the kitchen and get a wash on and then, if she was lucky, she could get her old school books out and take up her education again where she had left it off. Because you couldn’t make time, she had been deluded about that. Time was a thief, he stole your life away from you and the only way you could get it back was to outwit him and snatch it back.” And a little further: “They would have gone to bed with full stomachs and had sex to make up and slept well so that they would be ready for another day of the same life, but what actually happened was that Keith made a move to put his arms round her and she spat at him, which was something new as well, and then she ran outside and got the axe from where it was stuck in a log beside the sawhorse, and then she ran back inside with it.” This is the narrative simplicity and clarity that I aim. Yes, I am all ands, buts and becauses.

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