Monday, 13 June 2011

My... err... life.

Hello there. I hope June is going well for you. What have you been up to?* As you undoubtedly know, I've been wading my way though exams for the last month, and still have 3 weeks left. They're going reasonably well I think. Not brilliantly but alright. If I were a shruggy type of person, I could describe my exam experience so far with a *shrug*. I could also throw in a 'meh' for good measure. I seem to have got over the terrifying panics I had before every single one of my first 7 exams, and have settled on a slightly worried, but resigned attitude towards them. Soon they will be over and I will have nothing to worry about until slightly before results day when suddenly the wave of panic, guilt, comparison and tedious soul-searching will come crashing over me again. So that's the Meg's Life Update done. A bit of Meg's Life anyway. The rest of this will be about A Levels. And me. And my future. Mainly me still.

Until a couple of weeks ago, I thought I had my A Level choices sorted. I'd decided on English Language, English Literature, History and Politics - all heavily analytical and all my strongest subjects. But therein lies the problem: As a result of the analytical nature of these subjects, they're all extremely essay-based. I like essay writing, but the thought of spending almost the entirety of the next 2 years at school writing essays, seems... well.... boring.

What I want is something logical and almost relaxing to counteract the fierce analysis, debating and 'thinking outside the box' required by my other subjects. I immediately thought of Maths - Maths is certainly more logical than Politics or English Language, and I've even started to find it relaxing. But the trouble is, Maths is hard. It's never been my strong point and is unlikely to get me the grades I could get if I stuck to the subjects I know I can do. And yet... There's something about numbers that fascinates me and I don't particularly like the idea of next week's exam being the last time I ever do 'proper' Maths.

And then there's Theatre Studies, which has also always been at the back of my mind. I've enjoyed doing my Drama GCSE a lot and if I want to go down the route of stage lighting for a possible future career, Theatre Studies would be the obvious choice. Although it is also quite an essay-based subject so that's still not getting away from all this bloody writing!

I suppose the other question is, what would I drop from my existing plan of subjects to accommodate the new subject, without messing up my options for the future. I still haven't really decided what sort of degree I would want to do - assuming I still want to go to uni in a years time. The main decision I'll have to make next year is whether I want to go down the English route, the History and Politics route or the technical theatre route, in terms of a possible degree. Career choices will probably fit somewhere in there too, but I'm still veeeeeery undecided about that. I reckon I probably want to do something technical. Working in BBC Radio is probably my main aspiration but again, I'm not sure. Theatrey stuff would also be amazing. Or historical research. Or writing. Or film editing. Aghhh I don't know.

Just read though all that and am hugely embarrassed over the astonishing number of personal pronouns used in this blog. Am now writing without them, in an attempt to rectify this and possibly persuade that this self-centered blog was a complete accident and such blogs are not a regular occurrence at all. Not at all. Is this working? No? Damn.

* I opened with an enquiry about you because I'm very aware that this blog is entirely about me. And I'm trying to work on being a better listener, rather than talking about myself the whole time. I am also aware that this attempt is entirely contradicted in the rest of the blog. Err... yeah. But still, please feel free to tell me about your current life situation in the comment box. I'm genuinely interested. :)


  1. How about a science or IT qualification? No essays, it broadens your education, and it's easier than people think. Biology?


  2. Hi Meg, hope the exams are going all right i.e. not too awful.
    If it helps at all I did English Lit, Maths, French and Music for A-level, and choosing that was one of the hardest things I've had to do (up until that point anyway). It's normal to feel like you don't know what to do in terms of The Future; I still have absolutely no idea. I would say that Maths does get quite hard if you haven't done Additional Maths GCSE, but it is good to have a non-essay subject. And if you don't like lots of essays maybe an Arts subject isn't the best course for university? (I've had to do an awful lot this year. But I do go to an insanely academic university...)
    Hope that helps a bit :)

  3. Hi,
    I have finished my first year of A-Levels and have enjoyed them immensely.
    I've done my AS exams in English Literature, Government & Politics, Economics and Spanish. This Friday I'll have done AS and A2 in French.
    I thoroughly recommend all these subjects (apart from Spanish which I'm dropping).
    Economics particularly is absolutely fascinating, completely exceeded my expectations. There is considerable essay writing but logic involved too. And it's essential really, I've learnt more in Eco than any other subject. One needs to know about interest rates and inflation in life anyway.
    English Lit is difficult IMO, contrary to the opinion of someone who tweeted you. This year I had a closed text too, it depends which exam board you're with. Having a good memory is useful, and you must work hard.
    Politics is brilliant, and obviously essential if you're interested in it as I am and want to go on to study Politics at uni.
    Apparently History is interesting, and it's valued by unis.
    Also, I'd say to anyone: get as much work experience as possible! Seriously, because otherwise you'll be approaching application time and won't have done any work related to the subject you want to study at uni and that looks shit. (ie my situ).
    To be honest, I'd say do academic subjects for A-Levels, as you can always go into Drama later if you like. It's better to start with a broad range, without refining too soon.

    PS: My friends do Biology, it is one of the hardest A-Levels and I wouldn't recommend it unless you do Chemistry with it. One of my friends dropped it a week before the exam and the other thinks she'll do badly; everyone got Ds, Es or fails at the mock.
    PPS: Maths is infinitely harder than GCSE, the two are incomparable.
    PPPS:(does that even exist?) Sorry about the ludicrously long comment.


  4. James - That's true. I was considering doing Physics or Chemistry but I think I'd struggle a lot. They interest me but they don't exactly come naturally. I'd be asking questions every night on twitter :) Thanks.

    Kathryn - ooh that's interesting about Maths. I think maybe that would be too difficult then. And it's not that I don't like essays, it's more that I feel slightly baffled at the thought of four essay filled A Levels. I'm not sure, it might be okay. I've got a taster day thingy at the end of June so I think I'll know more about which I enjoy around then. Thanks for your advice, I really appreciate it.

    Sienna - Ah, I was thinking about Economics. Is it mainly Maths based or Politics based? Certain aspects of it sound fascinating but some sound really confusing and numbery. I definitely want to do Politics and English Lit and probably English Lang, but a bit torn over History. I don't know how taking Economics would affect different degree possibilities. I'll definitely ask the department at school and find out more about it. Thanks so much for your comment!

  5. Hi Meg,
    Maths is a really useful A-level, attractive to universities and employers and it would use a different bit of your brain. If you get an A at GCSE, you'll be fine at A-level. I loved Maths for being finite and for the constant possibility that you might, one day, get 100%.

    I wouldn't do a random science on its own - without maths it won't be at all useful to you.

    And much as Theatre would be fun, for A-level I'd stick to academic subjects.

    Good luck with the rest of the exams :-)

    @placefarm x

  6. You're welcome! Okay last one I promise,
    Economics is not at all maths-based. Despite getting A at gcse (you may think i'm a show off but it's because i got bad results), i'm rubbish at maths and good at economics. No one else expected it to be how it is. There's no maths involved at all, save simple multiplications and the annoying 'figure out percentage change'. There are graphs, but they're simple with no numbers - more there to help you remember what things are.
    If you're interested and what to get a heads up, I'd watch Phil Holden on youtube and/or go on
    which has interesting and relevant articles.
    At this stage it's basically talking about different taxes/subsidies, how government can intervene and should it, how markets can fail when left to their own devices.
    Hope you make good choices.