Saturday, November 05, 2011

Gurning* for the BBC

It is not news that I can sometimes have a less than firm grip on reality. For example, I have been known to refer to my books as documentaries. I have written elsewhere on the Bottom Syndrome - the conviction that no matter what the brief, I CAN DO IT! And I have a deep and vivid belief that I am 6 foot tall and of a willowy persuasion.

It seems a long time ago now, but way back in August, I was interviewed by 3 pupils from Liberton Primary School, at the Edinburgh Book Festival. The BBC Audio L.A.B. had organised a series of these interviews where pupils were paired up with children’s writers doing events at the Festival. They learned things about how to conduct an interview, how to handle a mic – not as easy as you might think! – how to speak clearly and with a smile.

Here it is: Audio L.A.B

I have no idea who the dumpy gurning type is in the photos, but that's definitely me talking. My interviewers were delightful - and, interestingly, looked exactly the way they do in the photos! How strange is that ...

Cheers, Joan.

* This is what Wikipedia has to say about this quite odd sport:

"Gurning contests are a rural English tradition. By far the most notable is that held annually at the Egremont Crab Fair, which dates back to 1267 when King Henry III granted the fair a Royal Charter. The origins of the gurning competition itself are unclear, and may not be so old, although it was described as an ancient tradition by local newspaper the Cumberland Paquet in 1852.

The competitions are held regularly in some villages, with contestants traditionally framing their faces through a horse collar— known as "gurnin' through a braffin'." The World Gurning Championship takes place annually at the same crab fair in Egremont, Cumbria. Those with the greatest gurn capabilities are often those with no teeth, as this provides greater room to move the jaw further up. In some cases, the elderly or otherwise toothless can be capable of spectacular gurns covering the entire nose."

So now you know.


At 3:58 AM, Blogger Penny Dolan said...

Sounded to me like a brilliant interview with lots of interestign things said. You were clearly holding the kids attention and making sure they had a good time too, and all spoken in a lovely voice. ps There are some lovely sparkly photographs in there too, and not just of the children.

At 6:57 AM, Blogger Joan Lennon said...

Thank you!


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