Being an author: how we mark our learning achievements

Today, i am an author. It must be true, because yesterday the book was published and, around twenty minutes later, someone bought it! I don’t know who. If it was you, thank you. Actually, strictly speaking, they were the second person to buy it, because i bought one myself, just to check it all worked, but i don’t think that really counts. This is not my biggest achievement to date, but it’s one i’m quite proud of because to be an author, you have to actually write a book and there are few shortcuts to that.

We tend to portion out our lives around key achievements or milestones: being a teenager, doing your exams, graduating university, turning thirty, retiring. Some of these milestones are to do with our standing in our communities, in society: becoming an adult, being old enough to vote, whilst others relate to academic achievement, such as passing a degree or postgraduate course. But in between these large achievements, sometimes it’s hard to spot the small ones, which is why, for me, this was an important day. Many of my friends are musicians and, to an extent, this is like the day on which they get their first album out. You can be a musician all your life, but there is something magical about making an album (and selling your first copy!).

It’s funny how i don’t tend to regard the blog or work in social forums as ‘writing’ per se, it’s kind of the rough draft for me. There is something satisfying, something different, about collecting a body of work together and putting it between two covers, saying ‘at this moment, this is what i think about this subject’.

It is, of course, a book from the blog: ideas that have germinated and gestated here and in the Learning Forum have taken shape because of the shaping and reshaping that they receive in the process. This externalised, very public rehearsal space, the chance to develop ideas in the blog, refine them through webinars, conferences and podcasts, then capture them in a book, it’s a very different way of working and of writing than i’m used to, but very productive, very collaborative and great fun.

About julianstodd

Author, Artist, Researcher, and Founder of Sea Salt Learning. My work explores the context of the Social Age and the intersection of formal and social systems.
This entry was posted in Achievement, Blog, Book, Challenge, Community, Identity, Learning, Social Learning, Writing and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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