To continue the thread of my Arvon tutors, there are the ones who did all the work. Blake Morrison (the Colin Firth look-alike…) just swanned in and out, even though the swanning out took time.

Hannah Pool was one half of the hardworking team, and before the course I sort of felt I knew her. I first “knew” Hannah from the Guardian. I’ve always raced past her beauty column, on account of me having the wrong colour skin. And because I’m so not interested in beauty tips. I’m a lost cause.

And then there were the extracts from her book about the trip to Eritrea to meet her biological family. That was very, very interesting. I always meant to read the whole book too, but forgetfulness being what it is around here, I didn’t.

Luckily this course set me back on the right track. And what a book My Fathers’ Daughter is! Do read it. And note where the apostrophe is. Took me ages to notice.

Hannah provided us with excellent advice and support as regards magazine articles and such. She was even quite complimentary about the witch’s scribbles. Hope she wasn’t being nice. By the last afternoon we were practically fighting over her. So perhaps an appointments system next time?

As usual I had a mental image of Hannah before we met. I did have a photo to guide me this time, but it doesn’t do her justice. Neither does the one I took of her. And she laughs a lot.

Hannah Pool


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