A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away………. sorry I got carried away there.
Take two –
A long time ago, in another life, I was a part-time lecturer and assessor. I loved teaching and helping students craft their essays and when I put on my assessor’s hat I had to make sure students demonstrated their understanding of the topic and didn’t just copy swathes of text from books. To check for plagiarism I had access to software but I found that I never once had to use it. I love meeting and working with people so I got to know my students and very quickly learnt to recognise the ‘voice’ with which they wrote.
We all have a wealth of experiences, knowledge and skills and we use them when we write. This becomes our writing voice and is a reflection and expression of who we are. For example, you and I know what the colour green looks like. So what if I asked you to describe it. Easy peasey I hear you say– but – we’d each use our own perspective and experience to create that description so they, in turn, would be very different. In our writers’ voices others would experience our different perspectives and personalities. This meant for me as an assessor, that even if students didn’t put their names on their essays, it was still very easy to say who wrote that essay; sometimes I could almost hear them reading it to me.
The writer’s voice of a celebrant will give you a special insight into their personality, which then let’s you decide if this person is someone you could connect to and happily work with. See what I did there? Ending a sentence with ‘with’ is a grammatical no, no. The grammar police would throw away the key for that one. But, my writer’s voice aligns with my speech and I’d never say “with whom you would connect”!
When looking for the right celebrant for you?
When you’re looking for a celebrant to conduct your ceremony, it’s a good idea to read what they write, in several contexts. Take your time looking around their website, read the text as well as any blogs they’ve written, look at the photos, the colours and layout of the website – everything gives you an idea of their style, voice and personality. If you send an email enquiry, ask specific questions and see if you receive an automated or personal reply. As well as gathering information, this too allows you a sneaky peak into their personality. Do a quick search on any social media that you’re already on and see if your celebrant is there. Again you can see and maybe even hear them in action.
You can read testimonials as sometimes couples don’t; just say thank you but also mention how professional the celebrant was or maybe they talk about the extra lengths the celebrant went to cater for their needs. Or, sometimes it’s what isn’t said that gives you a clue! A testimonial can provide you with reassurance that you’re on the right track. However, unless you know the person giving the testimonial, they aren’t going to tell you if you will get on with the celebrant. Just think of the last movie you saw and the reviews it received, was it even close to what you thought of it?
It’s good to talk!
And then, ask for a chat. Being aware of someone’s writer’s voice is great but nothing beats a good chat with them: asking the wee niggly questions you have; finding out how the celebrant works and if they’ll be flexible in their approach; seeing if you’re a good fit and if the conversation is fluid and you’re comfortable communicating with them. There isn’t one celebrant that can cater for every couple so it’s for you, as a couple, to find that one celebrant that’s perfect for you. This wedding celebration won’t ever be repeated so it’s worth spending some time finding a celebrant who will make it super special (that’s hopefully me!).
And finally, listen to your instincts. If it feels right, it probably is right. Book the celebrant straight away. Good celebrants are booked twelve to eighteen months ahead and particularly if you’re having a summer wedding on a weekend. As you can imagine 2021 will be incredibly hectic, as couples have had to reschedule their weddings from this year and so available dates are much more scarce than usual.
Good luck and if after reading this you think you’d like to learn more, contact me and we’ll arrange that all important chat.
Kirk over and out (and now you know my penchant for sci -fi movies)