Monday, 1 August 2011

Please Mr Postman, is there a letter for me?

I'm all-a-jitter this week. Four years of work has come to an end, and by Friday I'll know whether it's been worth it.

At the beginning of the new century, I promised myself I'd get a degree by the time I was fifty. My birthday is fast approaching and so, I hope, is the postman.

Back in the late 1970s, I went straight into journalism training. I didn't want to go to unversity, partly because that path was what had been expected of me for years (and I never do the expected). I also didn't think it was right to spend three self-indulgent years poncing around lonely as a cloud when I could dive straight into a Devon newsroom.

I'd wanted to be a newspaper reporter since I was ten years old so, I figured, why wait?

But the main reason for not going to university was I rather mucked up my chances. On the day I was due to take my biology O-Level I gave birth to Number One Daughter.

So, in 2007 and several careers later, I signed up for an honours degree with the Open University. I was working full time, but it was flexible work and I could fit my studies in around the freelance jobs. I just wanted to see if I could do it.

Mr Grigg was very supportive, although he did say he couldn't really understand why I was doing it but if it was what I wanted to do then do it I must.

Apart from one blip, in which I chucked in a very tedious history course, the girl seems to have done good. A clutch of good passes and two distinctions later, I am now waiting for the result of my final module in Myth in the Ancient Greek and Roman Worlds.

If I pass my end of course project, I'll be the proud owner of an honours degree in humanities with creative writing. It might sound a bit poncy but, hell, if it hadn't been for the creative writing bit of the course, this blog wouldn't exist. It gave me the confidence to think my writing might just be good enough for public consumption.

Now, holding on very tightly to my lucky amulet and making the odd sacrifice to The Enchanted Village gods, I am counting down the sleeps until I can log on to the Open University website and find my result shining out like the Pharos Lighthouse or striding precariously like the Colossus of Rhodes across the Lush Places square.

So I know the die has already been cast, but a few fingers crossed around the world would be very much appreciated.  I'll let you know how I get on.

That's about it.

Love Maddie x


  1. I love your writing. Every blog is a treat and I look forward to seeing them in my Reader, so I am glad you went for your degree. Keeping my fingers crossed on the other side of the pond!!!

  2. It sounds like a fabulous degree to have. I'm sure you'll do fine. Well done for sticking with it - I've always promised myself I'd do something with the OU, but I just know what I'm like with self-discipline ...

  3. Well done! I have a great deal of respect for anyone who does a degree after the age of 25! Fingers crossed for that good result.

  4. I have my fingers crossed but I am sure it is not necessary. I read your blog faithfully, though I did not comment much, cause it was while I was at work. Retired now so I am commenting away. From this side of the pond.

  5. It's in the Bag Baby! You've got this in the bag Maddie! Fingers crossed in Austin Texas. Fabulously done!


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