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Another Mighty Landmark

This week marks another personal landmark, in that it was 40 years ago this week that I made my first-ever sale as a professional writer.

It was of a one-line topical gag, to The News Huddlines, at that time a popular show on BBC's Radio 2, produced by Jonathan James-Moore.

It was the very first time I had submitted any material to the programme and I hit the target, and continued to do so for the next 18 months or so.

I can still remember almost word-for-word what the joke was, and to the penny how much I was paid for it (plus a 65% repeat fee as the show was broadcast on Thursday evening and repeated on Saturday afternoon).

The following evening I had another gag used on Weekending, BBC Radio 4's then flagship topical satirical show., which was repeated on Saturday evening

In the space of that 24 hours I went from being an aspiring international banker at Midland Bank International to knowing that what I really wanted to do for a living was to write.

I knew I wouldn't be able to do it selling one-liners but I started scanning The Guardian Media section on the Monday morning hoping to find something suitable...


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