I’m going to be on BBC Breakfast on Friday morning. I have spent the last three weeks on a crash diet because I don’t want to find out that the adage about the camera adding ten pounds is true after the event, when I walk off set and switch on my phone to find a dozen messages from friends telling me how well I looked or asking how far along I am.

Also I’m on a ‘how not to swear on live TV’ crash course. This basically involves me whacking myself in the head every time I swear, which means I now have concussion.

I’m worried I’m going to drop an F bomb on prime time TV and am panicking so much I’m now also worrying that I’ll be so scared of opening my mouth and a fuck coming out that instead I’ll just freeze and stare into the camera like it’s Donald Trump, with a mixture of mute terror and nose-wrinkling loathing.

John and Alula have been trying for years to get me to clean up my act when it comes to my potty mouth, especially in the car. I just can’t help myself though. They once introduced fines. It didn’t work. I ended up hundreds of pounds worse off and swearing even more in annoyance at this fact. Perhaps I need to rig myself up to an electric shocker, like the one they use to train rats, and it can fire ten thousand volts through me every time a swear word passes my lips.

I’m also worried about what to wear and the following questions rattle around my head in an endless loop:

– what if my skirt rides up on national TV?

– what if I flash my knickers?

– what if I forget to wear knickers and unwittingly pull a Sharon Stone (actually that might be quite good for publicity and book sales…or perhaps not…)

– maybe I should wear trousers? (If I do end up wearing trousers you can smile at the screen and nod to yourself because you know this fear has won out).

– where do I look? Into the camera or at the interviewer?

– what are the chances my mum will phone up straight after and tell me I need a hair cut?

– should I get a hair cut?

– what if I forget to turn off my phone?

– Venus is retrograde I shouldn’t get a haircut.

– what if I trip over the camera cable on the way into the studio and stagger, arms pedalling madly in the air like a drowning person, before falling over face first like I did when I was 9 in a stage adaptation of The Hobbit, only this time not in front of an audience of 300 but ON LIVE TV in front of an audience of MILLIONS?

– what if people from my past, like ex-boyfriends, see me?

– what if ex-boyfriends see me and think ‘god, what happened to her? What is she wearing?’

– what if I swear?

Honestly, it’s so stressful. How do celebrities do it every day? And then I realise I haven’t even started worrying about what I’m actually going to say. Oh god.

5 thoughts on “The problem with being on TV

  1. Emily says:

    LOL. You will be fine. And they’ll bleep out any swear words. And your charm lies in your unfiltered delivery. It is real. But you won’t swear and you will look sylphe-like. As you always do. Concentrate on the top of Bill’s or the other fella’s head and think of someone massaging your shoulders and the Bali breeze. It’s very exciting!!!

  2. djpaterson says:

    A clip of half of those things would make you a great internet meme, so you’re right about the publicity. I’m tuning in with my homemade bingo card to see how many you check off*.

    *You’ll be fine!

  3. marty says:

    I had a dream last night. Luckily the neighbours had one of those noisy 5:am starts they love every now and then. It disturbed me from my dream. And in that blurry state between dream and awake I egotastically decided the dream would make a great book. I have never written before. In fact, I am well known for being very rubbish at writing even an email; it takes me days/weeks to respond to friends.
    So I am eating my Special K and attracted to the balloons in Carol,s weather report like a baby to a mobile. Then you come on BBC Breakfast. You have an engaging bubbly personality that probably owns any room you walk into right?It certainly did that to my living room today.
    So, thank-you. I have taken your novice novelist story as a signpost to bring my own story to life.

    Ps. Having googled you and found this blog, I have to tell you that there was one point where I was convinced you were gonna swear. I put the Special K down and eagerly edged closer to the telly. As you spoke about being inspired by the Vampire books I was sure you were leading up to “oh fuck I’m just gonna do it”.

    PPS. I noticed you played nice and safe and went for trousers doubling the mistake by also forgetting the fashion lore of “blue and black won’t get you in the sack”

    Oh I haven’t got time tell you how you also signposted my wife and I’s dream to give up our professional jobs and move to Dubai. Seems your appearance was a bit like when you first walk into Disneyland and see the main sign pointing the way to all the exciting worlds you can visit.


    1. SarahAlderson says:

      Thanks and good luck with your move!

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