Polly Faber: Children’s Author, Pet Picker and Tortoise Impersonator
Barnes Children’s Literature Festival: What did you want to be when you were growing up?
Polly Faber: Everything! But in no particular order, some favourites were to be a cooker (‘gas or electric’ asked my big brothers…), a pony, a golden retriever, a private investigator, a naturalist, a fairy and a film star.
BCLF: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
PF: It’s OK to feel sad sometimes because you can’t ever really know what happy feels like without it.
BCLF: And the worst?
PF: That all I had to do was follow the recipe and my gingerbread castle would come out fine.
BCLF: If you could ask another author a question, who would you ask and what would the question be?
PF: I’d ask Clara Vulliamy whether we could make another book together soon please? And what’s her favourite way to eat potatoes?
BCLF: My favourite word is …
PF: ‘Puggled’ is a good one. It’s from Yorkshire I think and it means very tired. I use it a lot.
BCLF: My greatest fear is…
PF: Plummeting. I don’t like tall buildings or planes much. I’m not verylikely to bungee jump or skydive. Or go across that glass bridge in China…
BCLF: My hidden talent is…
PF: I can do a good tortoise impression.
BCLF: Favourite book as a child?
PF: Depends on at what age but probably Ballet Shoes by Noel Streatfeild. I was a very big Asterix fan too.
BCLF: Who is your favourite literary villain?
PF: I scare easily, so I tend to only choose the setting ‘Very Mild Peril’. I used to sometimes skip past the baddies in books I knew well! Miss Slighcarp in Joan Aiken’s The Wolves of Willoughby Chase is properly awful.
BCLF: Tell us a joke!
PF: What do you call a French man wearing sandals? Philippe Phlop (you need to say it with a terrible French accent)