This is my final Ymlaen blog post. I could go on about how much it’s meant to me for years, but I’m going to take this opportunity to thank the humans, to thank everyone who has helped make the placement an unforgettable experience. Big shout out to the following:
Dan has been indispensable. I will state the obvious: There would be no placement without him! But from the moment I met him for my Ymlaen interview, he’s been so supportive and thoughtful. I can’t even attempt to pin down everything he’s done, but I can say I’m wholeheartedly grateful for the opportunity he helped see into being. Lucent Dreaming wouldn’t be what it is without him, and I wouldn’t have met all the wonderful people I’ve met without all the wonderful things he’s put in place.
Amy has been my Rabble mentor and has pushed Lucent Dreaming to be more than I ever dared imagine. From suggesting I make a sample issue, to suggesting I hold a launch event, she’s helped make Lucent Dreaming real! Not to mention she knows exactly what to say and how to help me reframe my worries when it comes to the emotional/mental strain of running a new business.
Kayleigh Mcleod and Sara Pepper (Creative Cardiff)
Sara and Kayleigh are magic. I don’t know how they manage to do all the things they do and still have time to look out for me and support my creative business, but they do. Kayleigh especially has been such a blessing. She’s been invaluable with the launch, helping it be the best it can be and immortalising it on the Creative Cardiff website. But way before that, with everything from social media to short story contest hosting, she’s been available to chat and offer advice when I really needed it.
Claire Parry-Witchell and Sean Hoare (Cardiff University Enterprise and Start-Up)
Claire and Sean have not only helped put me in touch with other business advice services like Mark Adams from Big Ideas Wales, but have given me wonderful opportunities. The seed funding I received from them got Lucent Dreaming to print and they also gave me the opportunity to talk at a Start-up Accelerator event, something I would never have anticipated a year ago.
Lucent Dreaming wouldn’t look so polished were it not for Mike! And it probably wouldn’t have got up the stairs to Rabble either. 100 copies of Lucent Dreaming are pretty heavy. I’m also super grateful for all the tea he made me pretty much every day for four months leading up to the launch (until he left!)
Sarah inspires me. She taught me what to look out for when it comes to printers, which helped immensely for my print run, but she is so creative, talented and focused. I aspire to do the kind of stuff she does. She brings joy to people with her art!
Marc has encouraged me to think about doing business differently, to be radical with business models, to think outside of the box with things like advertising, and to carve out my brand identity more than spend energy competing with others.
Ffion is wonderful. She’d only recently joined Rabble around the time I was gearing up for my launch, but she still gave me a card to wish me luck and I still look at it today because it makes me smile. I appreciate her wisdom and encouragement when it comes to being part of the creative industries, not knowing what’s coming next when dabbling in several creative things.
This is very straightforward. I want to thank Alex for being the hand model for my notebook. He helped make one of my childhood dreams come true!
Matt Sullivan has done the important job of indirectly encouraging me to focus on my side project: writing a novel. He also critiqued my Lucent Dreaming business cards (although I didn’t follow his advice about including contact info and that was probably a mistake), but more importantly than the above, he joined me when I was craving Wagamamas!
Chris once helped me fix the scrollbars and transparency on my website. He’s also mentioned trying to teach me Spanish, but what I’m most grateful for is that his sense of humour is as dark as mine so I always have someone at Rabble to talk to about the kind of skin present in hand-finished cakes.
Helia has been super supportive and so lovely. She’s helped me understand my own vision for my life and encouraged me to make the most of the skills I have. To have the perspective of someone who has a similar attitude to working life was so valuable. It’s reassuring to hear that it’s actually good to spend time doing what I want to do and that it might lead to doing the kind of work I want to be paid for.
I’m sure I’ve missed a bunch of people on this list, but I’m truly grateful for all of you reading. The Ymlaen placement has given me direction, made me understand my skills and truly changed my life, if only in terms of all the wonderful people I’ve met along the way. I’m especially grateful to everyone at Rabble Studio. You are all awesome and I’d be poorer without you.
Thank you to everyone who brought the Ymlaen placement into existence. I hope it continues beyond its pilot year! It’s been an honour being its first recipient. If you want to know about my full placement at Rabble Studio, click for more information!