I was invited to appear on BBC Radio Stoke yesterday and confess to being quite nervous; I hadn’t been interviewed on air since Woman’s Hour (live, twice) when I returned from Rwanda, and a brief appearance (not live) on The South Bank Show to talk about Coronation Street. In my view, one good thing about being a writer is being alone and therefore anonymous. Now I was being coaxed out of hiding and asked to describe how I came to write my book. And so that’s how I came to be worrying and – ludicrously – feeling I must have a shave, then – even more ludicrously – fighting indecision about what to wear for the interview. In the end I went for smart casual, which I believe is rigeur.
It was not so much the fear of drying up that made me so nervous – I mean I can talk four legs off the proverbial donkey – it was more because of the reasons for writing the book in the first place, ie. the desire to tackle, through loosely-themed stories, the issue of depression. Bearing one’s soul in print is easy, bearing it to hundreds of thousands of listeners is not so easy. But I think I managed it, and I think having a clean shave actually helped. So when all is said and done perhaps I wasn’t being so ludicrous after all.
Sales of the book are looking pretty good, and I’m told the local book shop is sold out of copies. Further afield looks equally healthy, and though nobody’s yet been hurt in a stampede, I am, if lore is anything to go by, in demand. Nevertheless, I’m also told, I have to make further appearances on radio to plug the book. I must make sure I’m stocked up with razor blades.
Day Return to Cocoa Yard paperback, published by Austin MaCauley is available from Waterstones or download the ebook at https://www.amazon.co.uk/Day-Return-Cocoa-Yard-Anthology-ebook/dp/B08G1ZMV8T/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=mark+bickerton&qid=1599223892&s=digital-text&sr=1-1