Maggy Farrell has a problem: when she talks, she has a terrible memory for nouns. It’s horrendous! Hat, cheese, Sherlock Holmes, Brazil – you name it, she’ll call it ‘thingy’.
And yet when she writes, something happens. Her brain no longer resembles a dry, dusty, barren wasteland. On the contrary, it is a veritable ocean of nouns. They gush like geysers. They leap and dance like a babbling brook. They cascade like a wordy waterfall from her fingers onto the keypad.
Kerfuffle, panache, smorgasbord, rhubarb… They’re all there, jostling for her attention. She simply can’t stop them!
Perhaps that’s why she’s so often to be found sitting at her computer, tippy-tappying away like there’s no tomorrow.
Before embarking on her career as a writer, Maggy taught English and Drama in the North East of England and in the Netherlands. She would like to express her eternal gratitude to those students kind enough to shout out relevant and polite suggestions whenever she was struggling to find the correct word!
Name 3 things you are proud of:
- Parachute jumping over the Derbyshire countryside. Okay, so maybe jumping isn’t completely accurate. Actually, I’m so scared of heights that I froze and they had to shove me out of the plane – or so they tell me. So, more of a parachute push, really. But it still counts!
- Performing a dance routine in front of the whole school. Okay so maybe performing isn’t the right word. Actually, I had such awful stage fright that I froze and simply stood there, grinning inanely as the others gyrated round me. And the most embarrassing part? I was a teacher and all my students and their parents were watching! But still – I got up there and gave it a go!
- Playing the glockenspiel in a talent show when I was five years old. Actually, at first I froze like a rabbit caught in headlights. But heroically my five-year-old self managed to get to grips with the situation and conquer my fear. Hooray! And then I proceeded to play every wrong note imaginable for the remainder of the song. Nice…
Name three things you love doing:
- Watching movies. I once did a university course in film, and spent an entire year lying on the sofa in my pyjamas watching black-and-white movies and eating chocolate. Pure Heaven!
- Lazing in bed for hours completely engrossed in a good book, with a cup of tea and a chocolate digestive on the side.
- Lying in the grass looking up at the trees and the sky and dreaming. Preferably with a square of chocolate melting slowly and deliciously on my tongue.
Thinking about it: maybe I just love chocolate…
Have you always wanted to be a writer?
Yes – writing has always been something I’ve enjoyed doing. For example, at the tender age of ten, I wrote my very own rock opera (our school was doing Joseph and his Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at the time). And later, when Four Weddings and a Funeral was hugely popular, I tried my hand at a very British romantic comedy script (you know the sort of thing – cricket on the village green, tea with the vicar, mistaken identities leading to mayhem at the summer fete. (A bit like Midsomer Murders – only funny).
Actually, I might have another look at that…
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