HURRAH! I have been shortlisted for the Queen of Teen Book Award, which is kind of like the Orange Prize for Fiction, but with more sequins and bigger dresses. This has led me to reassess my previous diagnosis of self as one of life’s losers. A conclusion I came to after winning the following paltry list of prizes in my thirty-something-years’ long existence:
1. The Umbrella and Yoghurt Pot race at St Mary’s Primary in 1979 (not really a test of athleticism so much as co-ordination of poking brolly inside empty Ski tub and keeping it on there for 50 yards).
2. A Toners and Shaders hair dye from Jackie magazine in 1983 (not really a ‘prize’ so much as a giveaway)
3. The Downing Street Quiz Night (a test of team nerdism, so should have triumphed, but, in fact, won by cheating – i.e. only knew total number of PMs in history by faking a toilet break and counting all the portraits on the back stairs).
4. Er… that’s it.
But am now on same piece of paper (am assuming the shortlist is actual piece of gilt-edged, rose-scented paper) with Meg Cabot, Louise Rennison, Jacqueline Wilson and other literary giants. This is it, the turning point. From now on am going to be utter winner. Definitely… maybe.
About Joanna Nadin
A former broadcast journalist and special adviser to the prime minister, since leaving politics I’ve written more than 80 books for children and adults, as well as speeches for politicians, and articles for newspapers and magazines like The Guardian, Red and The Amorist. I also lecture in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University, and hold a doctorate in young adult literature.
I’m a winner of the Fantastic Book Award and the Surrey Book Award, and have been shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize, the Booktrust Best Book award and Queen of Teen among others, and twice nominated for the Carnegie Medal, for Everybody Hurts, and for Joe All Alone, which is now a BAFTA-winning and Emmy-nominated BBC TV series. I've also worked with Sir Chris Hoy on the Flying Fergus series and ghost-written Angry Birds under another name.
I like London, New York, Essex, tea, cake, Marmite, mint imperials, prom dresses, pubs, that bit in the West Wing where Donna tells Josh she wouldn’t stop for a red light if he was in an accident, junk shops, crisps, Cornwall, St Custard’s, Portuguese custard tarts, political geeks, pin-up swimsuits, the Regency, high heels, horses, old songs, my Grandma’s fur coat, vinyl, liner notes, the smell of old books, the feel of a velveteen monkey, Guinness, quiffs, putting my hand in a bin of chicken feed, the 1950s, burlesque, automata, fiddles, flaneuring, gigs in fields on warm summer nights, Bath, the bath.
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