So, guess who was at an awards ceremony last night?! To be precise, I was at the University of Chester awards evening for the High Sheriff’s Cheshire Prize for Literature.
In my head, I was doing my best to think of it as a talk by Brian Cosgrove (you know, Cosgrove Hall, Chorlton and The Wheelies, Jamie and the Magic Torch), which happened to have a few announcements at the end.
Of course I set off a bit later than planned, there were roadworks, my satnav decided I would prefer to park outside the campus, and once I got on campus most of the car parks were full and I ended up somewhere round the back. However, I noticed that the car next to me had a rhino badge on the back, and rhinos are my lucky animal. So I felt quite positive as I ran to the building. I even managed to get to a seat without embarrassing myself too much.
Brian Cosgrove was ace and deserves a blog post of his own, so I won’t go into details of his talk here. Then the High Sheriff explained a little bit about her work (and the difficulties attached to the uniform!). Then our host began the thank yous to the sponsors (MBNA) and the judging panel, who were called up to introduce their choices. Here we go.
Five runners-up. So six chances. I looked at the number of people in the room and gave up trying to calculate the odds.
A judge began to describe the first story. It’s a very odd feeling, trying to work out whether something is yours or not. Could be…could be…nope, definitely not! Then you can relax and listen properly and applaud.
We got to story four, I think. About an ordinary girl, in an ordinary family. The judge carried on describing, and all the pieces fitted together, and I knew it was mine. So my name was called, and as I got up I remember thinking ‘There will be photos, did I brush my hair before I left the house?’ Well, too late now. I went up, shook hands, collected my certificate tube (which you can see in the photo above – very smart!).
At least then I could enjoy the rest of the awards, and listening to the winning story, without being on the edge of my seat! Even the photos were comparatively stress-free, except for worrying that the photographer would step back just a little too far…and it was lovely to chat to the other winners. Apparently there’s a book launch next year, which I’m already looking forward to. And Brian Cosgrove signed my Jamie DVD!