Tessa Barrie is a blogger and wannabe novelist from Jersey, Channel Islands. Her writing career has been sporadic, at best. After a flurry of pure teenage genius, published poetry at thirteen, and writing her first (and last) musical at fifteen, she has drifted between being in print, and not, relying on a ‘proper job’ to support herself.
She never gave up on her dream, and fate rewarded her in 2015 when she was made redundant. Deciding to call time on her 9-5 working life, she decided to have one last-ditch attempt at becoming a better writer
THE EXTENDED VERSION 🥱
I was born in Yorkshire in an era before mobile phones and social media. The children’s TV programme, Blue Peter, is responsible for kick-starting my love of writing. When I was seven, they asked viewers to write a poem about one of their dogs. I won a coveted Blue Peter badge, and never looked back.
I have written on a freelance basis for years, but the ‘proper job’ always got in the way. The name, Tessa Barrie (Tessa after my dog and Barrie, an intentional misspelling of the name of one of my favourite artists, Mr Cococabana himself, Barry Manilow) emerged when I was nineteen. I was writing for the local rag, and I didn’t want my mother to know that the slightly risqué weekly pieces were originating from my keyboard.
During the Nineties, I took a creative writing break to write songs and co-write my late stepfather’s autobiography, Brian Trubshaw – Test Pilot, under my own name.
I fell into blogging about eighteen years ago, blowing my own trumpet about my music, as well as waxing lyrical about other artists and bands. My blog site evolved into Tessa Barrie’s Lost Blogs about seven years ago – after I finally realised that I hadn’t got what it takes to write a chart hit.
In June 2015, after a too long a break from writing fiction, I met the late Barbara Large for the first time. She came over to Jersey (Channel Islands, UK) to host a writer’s weekend with Adrienne Dines. Between them, they kick-started my passion for creative writing.
One week after meeting Barbara and Adrienne, fate intervened. I was made redundant. The perfect ‘excuse’ to start writing the novel that had been whirring around in my head for years, Just Say It.
Just Say It is the bittersweet story of journalist, Lisa Grant. After growing up with a narcissist mother, she struggles to commit to a long-term relationship in her adult life. Only when she turns forty and finds happiness, she decides to harness her journalistic skills to find out more about her mother’s past and is shocked by what she finds.
The idea for my second attempt at a novel, recently re-titled The Secret Lives Doyenne of Didsbrook, came from a short story I had written called An Honest Review which was longlisted in a competition at the beginning of 2019.
The Secret Lives of The Doyenne of Didsbrook is a murder mystery spoof. The sleepy market town of Didsbrook is thrown into turmoil after the town’s best-known resident, the much-loved actress turned best-selling novelist, Jocelyn Robertshaw, is found dead.
My goals for 2020? I only have one, to get into print. Coronavirus may have delayed our plans and ambitions for 2020, but we must never lose focus on our hopes and dreams.