I had a slight setback a couple of weeks ago. I found out I can’t write. I always suspected there was more to this writing business than just sitting down in front of the baby laptop and press the keys in an intricate and varied pattern. There is.
I applied to do something. Which something is not important, but I was found wanting. Hardly surprising, seeing as I’m bold enough to think I can get away with communicating in my second language.
‘An assessed score of 80% or above is necessary for acceptance. Your assessed score was : 70 %. Applications are assessed on … communication skills (good written English, spelling, grammar etc) presentation and layout. The test revealed that your spelling, grammar and punctuation were below the required standard.’
It grates a little that this was from filling in a form riddled with spelling mistakes. But as you can see for yourselves, I have a fondness for incomplete sentences and sometimes use made-up words. But I do it on purpose.
I’m reminded of Mary Hoffman’s recent moan about lolspeak. I don’t speak lol myself, but try to understand it when it appears. That in turn reminded me of Son’s toddler years when we regularly went to the local hospital to check a suspected squint. Tests were of the kind where the poor child was handed a dotty black and white picture and told to point to the ‘pussy’. As he failed, I said to staff that they could try asking him if he could see a cat. I had never used the word pussy, so how could he know?
Anyway, back to my other failures. I have calculated that I seem to be writing around 175,000 words per year. If they were good ones, that could amount to a book. Us 70% types shouldn’t aspire so high, though. Just think if I was Mma Makutsi, with 97%.
Which brings me (almost) neatly to my other obsession; namely you. As soon as I think of my readers I get very nervous and don’t know what I’m doing. It’s like riding a bike; you wobble a lot less once you stop thinking about it. But when people I admire write to me to say that they think this blog is good, I am pleased and nervous in equal measures. At least we now all know I can’t write. So nothing to worry about.
Back with more rubbish tomorrow.