Philip Ardagh's accidental career
04/07/2012 by Hannah Lewis
Philip Ardagh fell into fiction by accident, he told the audience at Dinefwr Literature Festival
The Grubtown Tales author Philip Adargh told his enraptured audience that after a timing blunder at a sales conference where he was promoting a guide to hieroglyphics, he said "so many funny things" that he was asked why he didn’t write fiction. After the conference, Ardagh retrieved copies of a series of letters he had written to his nephew to entertain him while he was in boarding school. Compiled, these letters became Awful End, the first book in Ardagh’s popular Eddie Dickens series.
Ardagh’s fans were given a special treat as the author briefly read from his Unlikely Exploits. One of his most beloved characters, Malcolm the stuffed stoat from the Eddie Dickens series, also made a brief appearance. The author was busy entertaining his audience in a makeshift outdoor venue after a move from the scheduled stage due to a temporary problem, when the rain set in. Undeterred, the effervescent Ardagh effortlessly steered his audience, chairs and all, to shelter before continuing. He encouraged his younger audience members to stroke their (imaginary) beards in thought as he encouraged them to continue to read and advised them to, “Do a job that you love.”