I submitted my Masters’ Essay on 1st January. Following on from my previous post- I had lots of successes. I stopped when I reached the minimum word count, I stopped over the Christmas break and left myself just 24 hours to proof read, consolidate and ratify references. I did ok with managing myself doing this. I submitted the day before the deadline- then I couldn’t do any more.
Remarkably, it was marked and returned to me within 2 days.
I did well. The pass mark was 57% and I got 72.5% and good comments (which were more surprising!) Fab.
But the problem is, I got 29 out of 40 and the Distinction cut off was 30 out of 40.
Getting a Distinction makes absolutely no difference to my final mark- which is either Pass or Fail.
But missing it by 1 mark has really challenged me. I honestly really didn’t know what standard my essay was- I was hoping that it was enough- but ultimately I didn’t know just how good it was. I did what I did. But I know that actually if I got this mark with the minimal effort I put in- it wouldn’t have taken much more to get a Distinction and that is a uncomfortable truth. It would have been easier if I’d got a solid 65%… but I didn’t…
My response has very clearly told me that I’m not ok with doing ‘just enough’.
Please don’t misunderstand me, I worked hard. I did lots of reading and thinking. I am doing the Masters because I want to learn. What I didn’t do was edit the essay endlessly and go the extra mile in my writing.
What I realise is that I’m not ok with doing ‘just enough’- but I also know I want to be.
It was so lovely not being ill from exhaustion this holiday. It was great being able to switch off and do what I needed to do but also have fun with friends and read silly books and colour- in cushions. I liked that. I liked the feeling of not being totally shredded at the end of it. I handed in an essay with more left inside me, and that actually was a new thing for me. And I like it.
So, missing by 1 mark isn’t great. But actually its exactly what I needed. I know I can write at that level, just by doing what I do. I can choose to go all out or I can choose to do just enough and still have a life. I choose the latter. It just might not be a smooth road to get to that destination.
Thanks for listening.