Friday 23 June 2017

Cecelia Ahern: Twink helped me get my act together

Ahern
Ahern
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Kirsty Blake Knox

Kirsty Blake Knox

Author Cecelia Ahern has credited panto queen Twink for instilling a good work ethic in her.

In 1998, Cecelia performed in Twink's panto at the Olympia, Rockin' Hood: Prince of Thieves, as part of a mock girl-band called B'wildered.

"I learned a lot from Twink about work ethic, she's an incredible force, super talented. I really only have good things to say about her," she said.

Cecelia also shared the stage with other panto veterans including Dustin the Turkey and Samantha Mumba.

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"Dustin was the biggest diva - he was constantly going off script," she said. The writer also spoke about her brief pop career with four-piece band Shimma.

The band formed in 2000 and tried to get through to the Eurovision with single When You Are Near.

"For a long time I cringed, but now I show my kids and say 'Look mummy's in a belly top'. I wish I could wear that now," she said.

Cecelia says she is glad that Shimma disbanded.

"I wouldn't be writing if we had gone on to be the next Abba," she said. "Rejection is good because it makes you realise what your path should be."

The author was speaking at the launch of the Bord Gais Energy Irish Book Awards.

Read more: Graham Norton, Jilly Cooper, Pippa O'Connor and Jason Byrne among shortlist for Bord Gais Book Awards

Graham Norton, Jilly Cooper, Pippa O'Connor, comedian Jason Byrne and Louise McSharry have all made the cut for this year's Bord Gais Energy Book Awards.

Norton's debut novel, Holding, has been nominated in the Irish Independent's Popular Fiction Book of the Year and will go up against Cecelia for Lyrebird and rugger bugger Ross O'Carroll-Kelly's Game of Thrown-ins.

Broadcaster Louise McSharry's memoir Fat Chance has been listed in the Popular Non-Fiction Book of the Year.

McSharry is in a tough category with comedian Jason Byrne also getting the nod for Adventures of a Wonky Eyed Boy. Kathleen Watkins' book Pigin of Howth has been nominated for Children's Book of the Year alongside father-and-daughter writing team Fatti and John Burke's Histropedia.

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