I was born in Yorkshire in an era before mobile phones and social media. I’ve written on a freelance basis – on and off – for years while holding down a ‘proper job’.
I started writing under the name of Tessa Barrie when I was nineteen. I was writing for the local rag and didn’t want my mother to know that the slightly risqué weekly pieces originated from my keyboard.
During the Nineties, I took a creative writing break to write songs and to 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.
In June 2015, after a too long a break from writing fiction, I was fortunate enough to meet 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, which was the perfect ‘excuse’ to start writing my first pantser-style attempt at writing a novel, Just Say It. Over the next couple of years, I poured all my post-redundancy frustrations into writing it.
I’ve always believed that life is too short to be niche, and I hate being pigeonholed, but the bittersweet Just Say It would fall into the category of Women’s Fiction
The idea for my second attempt at a novel, recently re-titled The Doyenne of Didsbrook, came from a short story called An Honest Review which was long-listed in a competition at the beginning of 2019.
The short story focused on a writers group somewhere in the Home Counties and I confess, the idea to turn it into a novel wasn’t mine! It came from Adrienne, and also, James Sillwood, my writer’s group host.
So this time, I had all my characters, plotted a storyline around them and have surprised myself how quickly this murder mystery spoof has taken shape.
My goals for 2020? I only have one… to get into print.