My last lecture of 2016 was a copywriting test, about which I was far from enthusiastic. However, now that I have received my score I realised that the difficulties of this section of the module turn out to have been extremely useful learning experiences for me. The test was not hard for me, and I worried that this meant that I was simply not seeing the difficult elements to be corrected in the test. Fortunately the lessons I had learned had stuck and I was able to identify things not that were not only errors to be corrected, but also to make sentences flow and make the text read very well. As I have previously been published I am a pretty skilful writer but nthat is ot the same thing, and one always falls in love with one’s own voice. To be as passionate and skilled with the voice is quite a different thing indeed. This definitely feels to me as though I have grown as a person.
I genuinely surprised myself at how well I scored as this was by some distance the most difficult element of my masters degree to date. I do not envision a career in copywriting, however it is clear that I can do it and do it well which means that it is another valuable skill I can offer to employers.
I am also surprised that I excel in seemingly more academic elements of publishing. In addition to copywriting I also scored highly on the commissioning editing test which surprised me. I have always been at my best when playing rather than working, by which I mean working with great freedom in creative disciplines. People skills are not my biggest strength so to have succeeded in judging and weighing potential book candidates and to have made a successfully firm but diplomatic response to an author of great prestige was a new experience also. I care little for the egos of others when truth or money is on the line so it felt good to master this. Debunking an idea is easy. Letting down a decorated and accomplished academic without fobbing him off with a Dear John letter is hard. Considering I have often been told that the things I am good at are worthless in the job market, it is good to find myself.