Richard and Judy's Blog

Tide Clocks and New Reads

Tuesday 7 June 2011

Getting lots of feedback out and about re. the R&J Summer Reads so far. Glad you’re enjoying them. Can’t wait to hear what you think about The Novel in the Viola, and The Return of Captain John Emmett. Absolutely terrific writing in both. On that note, we are really interested to know which will be the overall favourite this time round – WHSmith have set up a voting site here. But post your reviews as well please on either our website or theirs – we really enjoy reading them.

Also getting lots of feedback re Have I Got News for You after guesting on the show last Friday. I was a panellist this time (with Paul Merton) rather than hosting as I did a while back. TOTALLY different experience. I’m not saying hosting is easy – it isn’t – but you do get all your gags on script and the best thing to do is just deliver your links to camera, ask the questions, and sit back and let Paul and Ian deliver the ad-lib gold.

But being a panellist kind of puts you on the spot. I suspected it would. You’re on your mettle. I decided the game plan should be to relax as far as possible and just not try too damn hard. Just make a crack when you feel comfortable, and accept you’re there as pretty much the straight-man. (Which means you have to accept any wind-ups in good part. It’s awful when you see guests coming over all defensive, or even worse, aggressive. Did you see Bob Ainsworth, the former Defence Secretary, a few weeks back? Car crash stuff, especially when he made a cringeworthy attack on Hislop. Talk about a suicide pass. He was dead meat from there on in).

The wind-ups I was treated to were actually very funny. An absurd mocked-up shot of me jogging wearing speedos (shown for a reason I can’t even remember), and Hislop taking the piss over me tweeting last week about my new tide clock in Cornwall. As those of you who follow me on Twitter know, I really don’t mind people taking the piss so long as it’s a) not abusive and b) funny. (Come to think of it, actually, even abusive tweets can be kind of ok if they’re funny). Anyway, my bish-bosh with Ian over Twitter and tide clocks got a massive response on Twitter, and out and about too this week. Touched a comedy nerve, for some reason. Had some really funny exchanges and witty comments from people. (Actually, sod it, tide clocks ARE great. I’d never heard of them till last week. They look great on the wall and they’re just...interesting and different. So there). BTW, you can see HIGNFY online for three more days if you want to learn more about tide clocks....

Anyway, back to books... Jude and I have just taken delivery of the long-list for the autumn reads. We’ve read two of them already, and one of them is one of the best ghost stories either of us have read in years. I can’t say any more yet, but it’s a blood-freezer, trust me.

Bye for now, and thanks for all the feedback here, on Twitter, and d’ahn the shops...


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  • Hello Richard and Judy

    My name in Rebecca G Steven and I am in the process of having my debut collection of short stories published. One of the publishers requests is that I provide them with someone who might be happy to review it for me. It is because I am such a huge fan of you both and have loved the way your endorsement of good books has raised the profile of quality literature in this country, that I thought I would ask if you would permit me to forward your names as reviewers. I hope you don't think me intrusive by contacting you like this, but it would be wonderful if you were able to oblige me. With best regards Rebecca G Steven

    Rebecca G Steven

  • Hello Richard & Judy, I hope you are both well. I sent a sample of my new children's book of bed time poetry called "Hattie" to your address in cornwall. I do not know if you have looked at it yet? It is now edited and is ready to go to print. It will have a hard backed cover and is fully illustrated. Although the sample book I sent to you does contain a few errors, it will let you see what I am trying to achieve. I have 100 copies reserved, and when I have the finished book I cannot wait to get out and promote it. It would be fantastic if you have received it and would let me know what you think of it. Hope to hear from you. Kind Regards Tina[petal]

    Tina Prince

  • Good morning Richard and Judy. I work as a Teaching Assistant at Oakington Manor School Wembley. In September I am becoming Library Manager. I am wanting to start up a children's book club for all our years which is Rec to Yr 6. Do you have any hints tips or am I being forward, is there any way you would be able to visit our school. We have such a great library which is not being used. I am trying very very hard to get our children interested in reading. We are in quite a deprived area but our school is so lucky to have a wonderful head who has supplied us with this great library and a very vibrant school. I know our kids would love to see you both. If you check out Oakington Manor Schools Website you will see our school and perhaps what I am trying to do.

    Many Thanks

    Fiona Chalmers

    Fiona Chalmers

  • Hi Richard we were listening to you and Judy last sunday on our way home to Bristol from Cornwall on the radio.We missed part of the show, please would you be able to tell me more about the tide clocks. I would like to buy one for my husband for christmas.Kind regards Lin.

    Lin Richards

  • Hello Richard & Judy, I’m Bob from TideClox. My initial reaction was a touch of disappointment that you had not bought one of our tide clocks, but the very mention brought us so much business I can only thank you for simply mentioning that they exist, as most of the population are oblivious to their presence or what they do. The results were brilliant and in addition to supporting the Children in Need Appeal, you may or not remember, we would just like to thank you personally. Perhaps you could have a look at our exciting designed Tide Clocks that are created and produced here in North Wales. Our sister business is Dayclox producers of a fantastic range of Day Clocks including the world’s best Digital Calendar Day Clock. Perhaps you could spare a moment to have a look at them also. DayClox’s main Customer targets are those of the older generation of which very few have computers to discover the existence of something that can benefit their everyday lives.

    Bob McAlister

  • Hi Richard and Judy, I am a big fan of your book club, and think it does wonders in encouraging children to read. However, I wondered whether you would consider extending book club for young readers (i.e picture book recommendations) I am a former primary school teacher and published author of picture books, and feel encouraging an interest in books from this very young age will help instill a love of reading in children. Best wishes, S. Webster

    sheryl webster