This blog comes from our Fundraising Officer Caer
I absolutely love writing. I remember a writer once saying that to engage people’s interest, you had to work hard to avoid clichés and well-worn phrases – in her books, people didn’t rummage around in their purses, clouds didn’t scud across the sky, and certainly no one ever snuck home with their tail between their legs.
I love finding the perfectly balanced phrase that snags in your mind like a splinter and gets to the heart of what I want to say. As a fundraiser, I write everyday. I’m no longer writing about my favourite holiday, or about the mystery of the missing school shoe. However different my current work may be, I still love writing. Ironic then, that after a year in the job, this is my first blog…
Thinking back to my school writing assignments reminds me how amazingly clear life appeared at that age. There’s this two dimensional view, seemingly encouraged in school, that you have one clear talent, and that that talent will clearly dictate your future career path. If you like animals, become a vet. If you’re good at writing, become a writer.
While young people are currently mulling over their exam results, and stressing about what these results mean for The Rest of Their Lives, it seems a good time to recognise that it doesn’t work like that anymore, if it ever did. I don’t think anyone has ever lived a life as clear and static as they are relayed to us in school.
Nothing is certain anymore. Nothing is secure. But then, nothing is set in stone. Our paths in life are not clearly defined. When we are young, there are so many different routes we can take. And it doesn’t stop there. The idea that we stop learning and developing when we walk out the doors of a 1950s squat cement bungalow filled with classrooms, or of a grand university filled with quads and libraries, is utterly ridiculous. The parameters of our lives are constantly shifting and changing. This is can be stressful, certainly, but it can also be wonderfully exciting.
When I got good marks in writing as a bright-eyed ten year old, I didn’t think, ah, that marks me for a life as a fundraising officer in the far-away city of London. But I write every day, and it is such a joy to find that the thrill I got from writing still exists. The pleasure I found in writing about ancient mysteries, ponies and adventures when I was young, I still get it now, as I seek to inspire, and to build in words, the work of this unique and life-changing organisation.