(Our regular bookgroups don't get the black cloth ordinarily BTW).
Now, strictly speaking, there is no 'Mostly Book Reading Group'. We have the Mostly Books Wednesday Evening bookgroup, Thursday Evening bookgroup, and Wednesday Morning bookgroup. The people taking part in the filming were made up of members of the last two. Here was the group photographed pre-filming looking
terrified nice and relaxed. That's real wine in the glasses as well:
Now, because the filming date had been arranged at such short notice, most members of the two groups couldn't make it. So having rashly said we'd go ahead, four days before the filming, I had three people signed up. Beginning to panic, and worried that I might get a roasting from Richard & Judy themselves, I fired off an email to our entire mailing list offering a seat in the group for anyone who had read the book and wanted to come along. I had an enormous response to this email - mostly of the "ooh, how exciting, good luck" type, lots of the "you've got to be kidding, no way" type, a few well-argued, strongly-worded essays on the benefits (or otherwise) of Richard & Judy in general - and one extra person for the filming. So that made six. Anyway, back to the filming. There were three people from Cactus - Jo, Roxanne, and the man who put us all at our ease, Tom (standing below):
At least two of our group found Tom "dishy", looking not unlike Damien Lewis. This sparked an excited debate about Mr Lewis, and I had to intervene to calm proceedings, and get us back onto track for the main event of the evening. The discussion of Kate Summerscale's book, and the filming. What I had neglected to mention to anyone (because I thought it might definitely send them away screaming) was that Tom and the team were not filming the discussion per se (although they did film for about 10 minutes for the opening shots) but instead, each of us would need to do a piece to camera. This is quite daunting - but essentially you sit in front of the camera, and are filmed as Roxanne asks a few questions. Each of us chatted away in response, and the results you see are the edited 'highlights'. They filmed everyone in a different part of the shop. The filming was great fun, and we were all (by and large) pleased with the result (for some reason the group looks as if it's obsessed with references to the weather in the book, but I'm sure that's just down to the editing process). Our thanks to Jo, Tom and Roxanne for sticking to time and making the whole experience as painless as possible.