Firstly, I just want to say a massive, massive, massive congratulations to everyone who graduated yesterday (or indeed, at any time). life’s not all about unviersity, but for those who have chosen to go or weren’t prevented from going, it’s a fairly magic moment. Sadly, I wasn’t able to be at my ceremony, (I’m just stalking everyone who was there on Facebook) though I shared in the wonderful celebrations after exams were finished. I don’t feel like my university experience has been invalidated in any way by me not turning up to this final shindig, but still, a part of me pangs.
We all at times feel the need to have a physical, palpable recognition of our acheivements, even if we’re not into grand ceremonies or rituals. We don’t just need a “well done” from our work colleagues or our bosses, but a letter, a certificate, a medal. I discovered that when I got a package in the post confirming I am now an official member of the Society of Authors, something my mum and dad put through for me as a present for graduating; what amazing and thoughtful people they are. That physical recognition: holding the card in my hand and reading the certificate, realising I was now part of a network specifically for authors, almost felt more like confirmation than holding the actual book itself.
Membership to the Society of Authors comes with a card that gives you discount in bookshops (Waterstones, Folio, Oxford Uni Press) as well as free advice about contracts and a raft of other benefits including subscription to their monthly magazine. It’s well worth a look if you’re an upcoming writer who’s just had one or two books published and needs a supportive group.
And for those non-writers reading this, it just as much applies. Find some kind of physical recognition for what you’ve done – or perhaps a society that’s dedicated to your needs. Alternatively, mark the achievement/occasion with your favourite drink and an evening out. We need to mark our successes like this or we forget about them, and then life can seem terribly futile. So, all you graduatees and bloggers, treat yourself. You deserve it.
Thanks for stopping by!