Our novels, short stories, and poetry all begin with a single idea. Sometimes this is a seed that develops over time, and occasionally (if we’re lucky) it’s a fully formed story that falls in our lap.
Blog posts are the same. We may follow a theme, or we could be a random blogger who posts lifestyle tips or insights into quantum physics, either way the idea for each piece has to start somewhere.
To confirm my theory, the idea of today’s post was sparked by my recent clumsiness in the local coffee shop. Occasionally I like to leave my four walls and be among people. Not in a pop-for-coffee-with-friends way (although I rarely say no to that!), but in an I-need-background-noise kind of way. I’m sure there are many of you out there who know what I mean. Writing is a solitary affair, so you have to get your humanity fix from somewhere, and the local coffee shop works for me – aside from the fact that I am an avid fan of latte and a sticky bun.
As I prepared to leave, after a therapeutic trip out and a large toasted tea cake, I lost my balance and dropped my handbag, almost taking the table and crockery with me. The contents of my bag spilled out far and wide, and I scrambled to the floor in a bid to collect my possessions – flashbacks of Tampax filled school bags haunting my every move.
I received a few sympathetic smiles and the odd raised eyebrow, as I stuffed not one, not two, but three notebooks back into my bag. The books were followed by an assortment of highlighters and a pen in the shape of a sword (worthy of any Tolkien fan)
I’m sure that the assembled coffee-goers thought I was either an escaped teacher or a stationery kleptomaniac.
As I hurried out of the shop, I was hit with a burning question – did every writers bag look the same as mine? Was I the only one to carry half of Paperchase with me on every outing? I write non-fiction and fantasy, so having various notebooks helps me cope with my Jekyll and Hyde writing moods. Does this work for everyone?
It’s an unwritten rule that a writer is never without their notepad, but how true is this I wonder?
My quest is to discover the truth. We’ve seen articles written that cover ‘Where I Write’, as well as ‘My Writing Desk’, but I’m interested in the battered leather bags, the satchels, and the rucksacks. What lurks inside the bag of a blogger, the purse of a poet and the knapsack of a novelist?
If you’re up for the quest, then share the contents of your bag and let’s see if the notepad rule is true.