My last radio play, Mad Girl, was nominated for an award by the Medical Journalists Association of Great Britain for the way it handled its central theme of mental health. (Beating off major medical shows like Casualty, Holby City, and assorted medical storylines featured in the soaps all year long.)
The awards happened this Tuesday evening at the Wellcome Gallery in central London, and in the end Mad Girl (and Falling, by Bethan Roberts) came runners up to a worthy winner, an episode of Getting On (written and acted by Vicki Pepperdine, Jo Brand and Joanna Scanlan).
I’m absolutely thrilled to be nominated, and it was a great evening all round. What made it even more special was that Mitch Hadley, one of the original subjects of the drama, came along with us to share the celebration.
I’ve always thought that, if the play was any good at all it was because it felt realistic. And I think the entire reason it felt realistic was down to the honesty and openness with which Mitch, and another interviewee Morgan Rivers, talked about their many years dealing with their mental illnesses.
As you can tell if you’ve heard the play, what they said had a deep effect on me, and I’m glad that their stories have been heard in this way. (If you want to listen to the play, there is a BBC download here.)
Have a look at Morgan’s blog. It’s remarkable. She’s a gifted writer, with an incredible subject matter.
And here’s a clip from the winning episode of Getting On – it’s very funny: