The UK's biggest voiceover awards ceremony, The One Voice Awards took place last weekend.
How fantastic it was to get so many voiceovers, voice actors in the same room together, and how nice it was to be all glammed up, give each other big hugs and high fives (remember those things?!?) and to just celebrate our amazing industry.
Lots of well dones and congratulations going around as 31 awards were given out, big congratulations to all the winners. No doubt there must have been a few people sitting around clapping as they watched someone else win a category they were nominated in.
I've been on both sides of the coin as I've been nominated and not won, and I've also been nominated and won.  I didn't win my category this year but the knowledge that by being nominated I am in the top 4% of voiceovers in the UK is good enough for me, and there's always next year of course.
But let's get to the question in hand... What is a voiceover award really worth? And what's the point of it?
Confirmation, affirmation, marketing, or is it all ego?
For starters it's a good measure of how you stack up against your peers and colleagues, and it can give you an indication as to what level or standard you are currently at. It's also a chance to big up the people you worked with, the agents, producers, editors, production houses, engineers, sound designers etc.
I've spoken to quite a few producers who told me an award means nothing to them! They're not bothered how many awards the voiceactor has won, they still want to put you to the test and see how you fit what they want or need irrespective of your accolades. And then there's others who say seeing the badge or award logo on a VOs site has made the decision for them, because it serves as validation to them (or other potential buyers) that you are top notch and can do the job. It's horses for courses I guess.
Winning a voice acting award is great and certainly is a boost, but anyone who thinks that alone will lead you directly to the path of millions needs a reality check. It ain't gonna happen! It may help get your name further out there, get you noticed, and make your standing rise, but there's still a lot you're going to have to do to continue to build on that momentum.
People just aren't going to remember you long term, so it's up to you to help them keep you in mind. Used as a marketing tool an award can create a ripple effect for your business, and also serve as motivation to you as you have that satisfaction your work is being recognised.
We do this job for love, passion, career, business, achievement, but also to pay the bills, as well as put food on the table and you can't dine out on winning an award for very long, if at all.
I mean there are fantastic voice overs who have never entered for an awards before, or those who simply never would. Not for any particular reason but perhaps it's not just their cup of tea, or others might just not like awards, or deem it all to be a bit self-indulgent. And winning awards is not the be all and end all of it, as those who enter or win may not be making anywhere near the amount of money compared to some that do not enter.
But whatever your take on it there's no right or wrong as it's a free country, and each can do as they please. But there was something magical about last weekend because being a voiceover artist is a solitary and often lonely job on a normal day of the week, let alone during recent times.
After what we've all been through it was just great to be able to see friends and colleagues again after so long, and meet loads of new ones too, and that in itself was more than worth it.