Before They Were Famous

Ep 1/4

Wednesday 15 August



Ian Leslie presents a new Radio 4 comedy show which brings to light the often surprising first literary attempts of the world's best known writers.

A project of literary archaeology, Ian has found evidence in the archives of newspapers, periodicals, corporations and universities, all showcasing the early work of writers. These include Jilly Cooper's brief foray into the world of war reporting and Hunter S Thompson's sadly short-lived employment in the customer relations department for a major American airline.

These are the newspaper articles, advertising copy, company correspondence and gardening manuals that allow us a glimpse into the embryonic development of our best loved literary voices. People whom we know today for their novels or poems but who, at the time, were just people with a dream - and a rent bill looming at the end of the month.

With Mathew Baynton, John Finnemore, Ian Leslie, Alex Lowe, Katy Wix, Fenella Woolgar.

Producer/Claire Broughton for Hat Trick Productions

BBC Radio 4 Publicity