Mad Girl
Good|May 2017

British journalist and author Bryony Gordon is best known for her searingly honest and brilliantly witty writing. But it’s her battle to bring mental ill health into the spotlight that looks set to leave a lasting mark here in the UAE…

Bryony Gordon is having issues. They’ve got nothing to do with her much-documented mental health battles – not today at least – and everything to do with the fact that she enjoyed her first evening at an international book festival last night a little too much and slept a little too soundly. Now, having arrived five minutes late for our interview, slightly dishevelled and profusely apologetic, she has realised she’s forgotten to wash off her facemask and will have to apply her make-up as we speak, a task made all the more difficult by the fact she very sweetly insists on holding my iPhone for me as “I do this all the time and holding your phone under someone else’s nose for ages is a pain in the a**”

While it’s undoubtedly more chaotic and wildly less professional than a usual journalist/interviewee interaction, it’s also funny, endearing and exactly what one would expect from Gordon, a woman who has made her living writing frankly, at times shockingly so, about her life for British national newspaper the telegraph.

While many of Gordon’s exploits in her twenties would be unprintable here, it’s safe to say she has never been shy about her wilder adventures. her first book was called the Wrong Knickers, in relation to a story that most people would be loath to tell their own mother, let alone a national audience. “I don’t really try to be confessional – I actually have issues with that term, because it’s only ever applied to women, isn’t it? But I’m just not really someone who can keep things to myself. I was built without an edit function I think. and it’s a bit of a coping mechanism too. If I take the [mickey] out of myself first, then it doesn’t matter so much if other people do it later, you know?”

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