Confession: I never thought I’d go into heavy machinery…
The past four years have been a painful but profound journey into finding myself and working out what I’m going to do with my life.
September 12th 2018 saw the deadline for my Masters Dissertation (I am yet to hear about a result – I have pushed it to the back of my mind). September 13th 2018 saw my first day as a real, grown-up, actual adult. I spent the day in bed – half nursing a hangover and half thinking about the mammoth task ahead.
The first thing I need to address is the expectations I have set myself over my years in academia. If you know me, you know that I’m a perfectionist. I don’t like to produce sub-standard work, I don’t like to not be the best that I can be at something, I excel at things that I know, and I panic when I don’t know what I’m doing. This, as you may imagine, created a stressful four years of education. That’s why I spent my first day of adult life in bed.
The second thing I need to address is my chronic procrastination. My educational motto has been ‘diamonds are made under pressure’ – I’m not proud of it, but it’s the truth. It’s not that I didn’t want to work, it was more that I was nervous that I would produce sub-standard work. I know – counterintuitive.
Now that I have addressed my perfectionist procrastinating ways, I can now update you, my lovely reader, on my journey over the last couple of months.
The 14th September saw the Great Job Hunt of 2018 begin. I was convinced that the best thing for me would be to spend a year not thinking about word counts, writing, or editing long essays. Cue the countless applications and rejections from a number of places sending me into a spin of despair as I realised that getting a job isn’t so easy. It was only recently that I realised that my perfectionist tendencies went into overdrive in the job hunt. For the first time in my life I went to an interview and was rejected. This has never happened before. I have never in my 22 years on this planet gone to an interview and not been accepted. My happy bubble of success started to fizzle away and the perfectionist in me began to get really frustrated.
On September 17th I put my CV in with a recruitment agency.
On September 18th I got a call from the agency asking me to come in for a job interview. They wanted a writer for a magazine Plant Planet. ‘Great!’ I thought, ‘I love plants! Can’t keep a succulent alive for the life of me but I’m sure I can do something…’
Turns out Plant Planet isn’t a botanists magazine, it’s actually the other type of Plant…
As in plant machinery…
The next 2 days were a blur, 2000 words on mini mining machinery and equipment consumed my days (and my nights too), the only thing I knew about mining was learnt directly from Billy Elliot… Great.
Turns out I have a knack for writing about machinery because the following Monday, the 24th, I started my job as head of Editing and Design at Plant Planet.
Now, I know I have a knack for making people giggle. I love a good pun and can’t resist the temptation to crack a joke when I can. I didn’t expect my new job to cause so much laughter among my friends and family.
“What’s a dance student doing at a Plant machinery magazine?”
“Are you sure this is the type of writing you want to do?”
“I always knew you’d go into heavy machinery”
I have had my eyes set on being a dance writer for so long that for a whole month, it didn’t cross my mind that my general career goal had started to come to life.
I am a writer. Granted, I spend my days writing about a subject that I never thought I would be, but nevertheless, I am a writer AND I write for a living… Woah.
Obviously, my year of working in a job that doesn’t involve writing didn’t quite work out the way I thought. The good thing is that the writing isn’t academic, which, in turn, has rekindled my love of writing for fun. I’m now ready to put some more energy into bookmarked ramblings, I’ve remembered the joy. Today I took a leap and started a Facebook page for the blog, something that I’ve been nervous to do for a while… But it’s done now, so there – and if you’ve come from said page, welcome!
So, yeah, the last couple months have been a whirlwind and generally just a bit weird. I didn’t ever imagine that I would be paid to write about plant machinery, or attend UK Construction Week, or have a conversation about how health and safety laws drive innovation in construction with my step-dad. Then again, life seems to have a habit of throwing curveballs…