8:00--8:30 am: interview via conference call for The Compulsive Reader on BlogTalkRadio. Magdalena Ball interviewing Mike French and myself about The View From Here, The Dandelion Tree and The Snowing and Greening of Thomas Passmore.
7:52¾ am: dial number and receive Telstra error message advising me to use a different overseas code.
7:54½ am: inadvertently phone New Zealand. No one answers. All the same, begin wondering what sort of conversation I might have if the Kiwi I'm phoning picks up. It seems a good idea to phone Australia-based Maggie Bell as if phoning from overseas.
7:56 am: dial number and receive Telstra error message advising me to use a different overseas code, or contact their Helpline.
7:56½ am: dial Telstra Helpline. Listen to menu.
7:57am: still listening to menu.
7:57¾ am: no option on menu for difficulties with conference calls, but plenty of options for reporting different sorts of faults. Never knew there were so many different sorts of fault. Fascinating really.
7:59 am: staring at telephone in disbelief.
7:59¼ am: phone rings! It's Maggie Bell and Mike, and a quick countdown into the show. Very quick.
It was great fun doing this interview, even though the call quality on my phone was poor and I couldn't quite hear everything; this just ensured my responses were even a little more random than normal. I sound like I'm standing at the bottom of a pit with the telephone receiver at the top, which is much the way it is. And whilst the evil cackle I produced at the start of the interview doesn't reflect my normal melodic laugh, I do get to sound like this when no one's thrown food into the pit for a few days.
I was going to read a longer extract from the book, but as I started each new sentence, the previous sentence was still coming back at me, which was a little trippy and reminded me of singing London's Burning as a 'round' when I was at school once. Kept expecting the altos and sopranos to kick in with the previous line and found myself beginning to listen for it.
Listen to the interview here.