Triumph: My story

I never looked at my work life as a story worthy of telling. Nobody does really unless you are that self-centred or somebody like Jack Nicholson who’s life basically starts every morning with the 20th century fox theme playing. But never the less my story has seen very few successful moments but the ones classed as that could perhaps be called triumphs.

There are many people whose careers can be defined by the very rare successful moment. One day in a thousand to prove that you are human and achievement can feel damn good. Plans gone well or badly, corners turned and the thought of never looking back.

I met the working world by way of an ultimatum. Here we have this acne prone fifteen year old sort of goofy kid who stayed in the shadows at school. Very rarely did I talk louder than a library voice and that was my process. School for many people was a hard time, for me I didn’t like it. If it wasn’t the teachers thinking they’ve actually lived a life worthy of their wisdom or the fact you were thrown together with several hundred other hormonal people all at different stages of development. I found a way to survive like many others and got through. So the ultimatum came and that was as basic as get out, or stay on and continue studies. Having bombed out in my exams, writing fiction seemed more important at the time (things don’t change I guess) the whole continuation to bomb out again didn’t seem enticing. I mean I could have taken my D grade results to university and spend the government’s money, but I didn’t.

Being a practical kind of guy my decision to seek an electrical apprenticeship had been decided and never again did I look back at school. As naïve as I was at the time, like all of us, we print off a resume or CV and think the offers for jobs will fly in. Wrong and probably my first lesson.

Any job that isn’t hard to get isn’t worth having. I took me a year from leaving school and an abundance of interviews and selection tests to finally get myself a job as an electrical apprentice. To me my first ever career triumph, a moment that I will never forget because that ultimatum in the past I could finally put my fingers up at and that would be a trend for things to come.

A small electrical company took me on and once a day I went to college. To begin with things were good and I was treated well. Every day I commuted to a job in London at a hotel and learned a lot of my trade there. But after a while the true colours of people came through. No names will be included but the only person with in this organisation that I had any respect for was my then boss’s old man. He indeed was an old man at 70 and even then he wasn’t to be crossed. A tough old electrician who taught me so much I know now. But we got on well and he could see that I wanted to work and be a success and overall I was a nice person.

Time continued to roll around and much of the time I was ridiculed or blamed for stuff that didn’t involve me. The other people working around me didn’t help or even support me as a trainee. Then came another triumph. After being told that ‘I probably wouldn’t make it’ by someone who was supposed to be my boss, I did just that and in 2009 became a fully qualified electrician. Even then my pay wasn’t anything near my standard of skill. But again I took the bullshit and carried on with a view one day something will come along. Much of the time we were on the road and away from home working. During this time I proved everybody that I was probably the most valuable employee but again the treatment wasn’t good enough or the money.

I won’t quote what was said to me on a late summer’s afternoon in 2011 from my then boss, but I was enough to never look at this job or him the same again. Looking back maybe I could of swung at him and ended things there, but I had the long game in mind and so I began to search for a better job. Maybe I could have burnt the bridge but I was the better person.

With the experience I had then I was able to secure an interview with a great organisation for a post as electrical support technician for at least three times the money I was then on. After a rather comfortable interview then came my next triumph. My experience and skill set along with hard working had propelled me above the bullshit of an asshole boss surrounded by assholes and I happily gave in my notice with my middle finger.

My new career began and never have I had a job that has meant so much to me. During this time I went back to college, something I always wanted and continued further into electronics. Things were going really well. But there was never a reward for my studies in mind. That’s fine for now I thought looking back at the previous conditions and people who were nothing like now.

A couple of Christmases’ ago I got a call from an old colleague. The old man whom I used to work with a lot. He called me just to see how I was doing. I didn’t even get a thank you from his son after I left. Then he told me he had become ill with cancer. It suddenly hit me that I had meant something to this person and this was a few good years since my departure. After a lengthy phone call I told him to let me know how he got on.

I never got another phone call from that man, someone who I will always respect. I still own some of the first tools I have brought by him. Not once did his son who I worked for (over five years) contact me about a funeral. Guess that’s the type of person he was. I had to look online to confirm my fears.

Back at my work situation I completed a 2 year ONC in electronics with a view to then carry my studies on further. My work skills grew stronger and I became more valuable.

More recently I wanted to change the situation at my work place. I won’t give details but things led to me coming back from holiday in search of that.

That change happened today. I applied for a new role with in the organisation I work in for a lot more money and maybe a better route for progression. With this life changing salary I can save for a deposit on a house or apartment and move out. My life can move on. Hell I could even fund production of books to be self-published.

I went to an interview very underprepared in all honesty. I said earlier on twitter it was Hindenburg. I thought I did badly. Many times I said ‘I don’t know’. Being honest I guess can work.

Then the phone rang and my final and finest triumph came.

My story shows that work hard will be rewarded and more importantly in whatever organisation you are in, you are the most important. Yourself, look after number one.

Although my story wasn’t detailed there is enough there to tell you my journey wasn’t easy at all. It involved a lot of graft and hard work. Bullshit from people and many many stressful days. I never thought about my salary at one point, it was too shameful. I partied a lot back in the day to drown out my shitty work life before 2011. But all that has changed now, because I grafted my way out of the crap and bullshit.

I won. For a nice guy that’s rare and it mustn’t be taken for granted. We are only here for a short time and success and triumph must be celebrated.

Today is my day.

 

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Another book update

The hall of information has been a tad quiet since early summer, mainly due to me not really having much to talk about. Not that I have been sitting inside all that time looking at the wall. Being on this journey that might one day result in becoming a published author is mostly an uneventful one (for the people outside looking in).

Hopefully within the next year that could change. Blogging and social media(ing) about being an author is mighty difficult to pull off when you have nothing to show for it. Yeah sure I have written books, but they have yet to be showcased to the world. Finding a publisher in this day and age is more myth than reality. But like all writers you edit and create a way to that goal.

UPDATE

My current project ‘Open Evening’ announced last month is at the tail end of production and is looking more and more like a short story or novella right now. That works for me as my whole approach to this title is a small amount of commitment just to get myself out there. I will spend minimal time trying to pander and attract the attention of any literary agents and then proceed to the route of self-publishing.

When I say small commitment, that doesn’t in anyway mean this project won’t have any quality. Any material I do publish will be of the highest standard.

Right now the new title sits at around 40,000 words. Really not a bad attempt for a first draft on a genre I know not a lot about and with generally most of the story made up on the top of my head. I’ve really tried to capture the whole awareness of the horror genre in this book and through narrative I will hopefully flip it back on itself. This whole genre awareness thing has been explored before but takes the story away from just the usual high school horror we have all come to know too well.

I expect by next month ‘Open Evening’ will be drafted and then the initial edit can go ahead.

Thanks to everyone for the continued support and follows of my Twitter, Facebook and on here. Means a lot. Hopefully some more news soon.

Humanity : Overrated

This past week in fact this past summer anybody with or without an internet connection knows that there is a massive amount of migration happening. People no longer feel safe in their conflict torn homes and are on the move. Men, women, children and families of people finding any means necessary to get away from the horrors of what their homes have become. Our basic human instinct is to escape any type of conflict especially to protect the ones we love. Sometimes that means taking huge risks in getting across borders and aiming for places where there is less conflict.

A few days ago I saw a photo that really defined the world we live in and the humanity or lack of that is apparent. A child washed up on a beach. Someone’s child who was probably promised a better life and that is was going to be ok. Much of the civilised and conflict free world are currently arguing about what to do, as always. It really hit home to me that these people, who are people like me and you are just trying to make a better life for themselves and their families.

People are currently arguing whether or not these people should be ‘let’ in. Of course there’s the overcrowding debate and where are you going to fit thousands of people? It isn’t long before the religious card is pulled and certain migrants of a certain religion apparently can’t be trusted. Then there’s the simple mindedness of ‘keeping Britain British’. Unfortunately that ship sailed here ironically, generations ago and all good economies and societies are made up of many different people from different places.  The immigration debate here in the uk comes from the subject not being handled right from the beginning. Politicians are aware of the past and wont want to repeat it so they are treading lightly.

At least one of my grandparents and probably a lot of yours were involved in some level of war or conflict in their lives. They defended their countries unconditionally with many never returning. They didn’t fight to keep Britain British or America American as an example; they fought for everyone to have a right to freedom. To stop other nations becoming war zones so they could live in peace.

If this is done right then these people need to be given a chance, hell they probably have something to offer. They are people after all, people who have trades, education and abilities to contribute to society.

Sure everyone can put a multi-coloured flag across their Facebook profile picture that’s ok and a show of the times moving on. But that picture of the young child washed up on a beach really brings it home. These people need help and like everyone they need a chance.

 

Censorship of graphic imagery and videos

What I have noticed as of recent is mainly parents complaining of the graphic and sometimes brutal images and videos put up on social media. Including the child washed up and the American news reporter being shot. Unfortunately most of the time people can’t moderate what they see online. When news does break it’s normally from a camera phone these days, on twitter.

People have complained numerous times about exposing this stuff to their kids. Social media is like a democracy, you can leave when you like and I thought Facebook was for adults mainly. Complaining to the highest of hells won’t get you anywhere. And we all want to protect the people we love but sooner or later they are going to realise what this world is like.