Before They Were Famous

A new series of this comedy is in production.

Spoof Radio 4 documentary which sheds light on the often surprising jobs done by the world's best known writers

Sketch Show
2012 - 2013  (BBC Radio 4)
10 (2 series)
Ian Leslie, Mathew Baynton, John Finnemore, Alex Lowe, Katy Wix, Fenella Woolgar, David Armand, Abigail Burdess, Mark Evans, Simon Kane
Ian Leslie
Hat Trick Productions

Even the most successful of writers have, at some point, had to take day jobs to pay the bills...

Ian Leslie brings light the often surprising first literary attempts of some of the world's best known writers. A project of literary archaeology, Leslie has found evidence in the most unlikely of places - within the archives of newspapers, periodicals, corporations and universities-showcasing the early writing examples of writers such as Jilly Cooper-during her brief and unfortunately unsuccessful foray into the world of war reporting, and Hunter S Thompson - in his sadly short-lived phase working 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 fascinating 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.

The concept for this series has previously been performed at Tall Tales, a bi-monthly comedy night at The Good Ship in Kilburn.