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Sarah Gorrell – BBC Radio Cornwall host

Sarah Gorrell hosts an after seven pm talk-back radio show on BBC Radio Cornwall. Reader's Voice spoke to her about her life on the air and the role reading plays in her life.

READERSVOICE.COM: What do people want to talk about when they phone you on Radio Cornwall after seven pm?

SARAH GORRELL: People talk about all sorts from heated debate on the day’s news to really personal stories. The joy of the evening show is I never know what people are going to say or who’s on the end of the phone. I’m amazed by what people share with me.

RV: What was the worst call you’ve had to deal with?

SG: A woman shouting abuse at her husband as he entered a phone in a competition. You’re always prepared for abuse or unexpected comment when you’re doing a controversial news debate but not for an innocent competition.

RV: Would your reading help you a lot in your job as a talk-back host, and if so how?

SG: I read obsessively, it helps me relax after a stressful day at work, I often have two or three books on the go at once. I read all the papers to make sure I’m up on the day’s news and never caught unawares.

RV: You also have done reporting on news events around Cornwall. Do you prefer doing talk-back or reporting or a combination of both?

SG: I loved reporting but presenting a phone-in show is my favourite job. Waching all the phone lines light up is the ultimate job satisfaction and I like the unpredictability of it.

RV: What sort of stories did you cover in Cornwall in your reporting?

SG: Everything from dog mess debates to council meetings..reporting for BBC local radio is wide and varied.

RV: What do you like the most about Cornwall? Have you always lived in Cornwall, and what other places have you lived in?

SG: Have lived in Cornwall for five years. Lived all over went to university in Nottingham and grew up in Guildford. Cornwall feels like home now though. I like the laid back pace of life and the wonderful people. RV: Can you give a general idea of the sort of books you’ve liked to read over the years?

SG: I’ll read anything, I read four or five books a week, so nothing specific, I read all sorts.
RV: What are your top five books of all time and why?

SG: Harper Lee To Kill a Mockingbird..book I’ve always loved.

John O’Farrell’s latest. I can’t remember what it’s called (This Is Your Life) but it’s about the shallowness of fame and very funny.
Tony Parson Man and Boy..brilliant book.
Enid Blyton’s Famous Five..got me hooked on reading when I was a child so earn their place in my top five.
And Agatha Christie’s crime fiction..read every single one in my teenage years.

RV: What sort of reading of journalism do you do? Which papers, magazines, net stuff?

SG: All the papers, the BBC web site and The Economist.