Daisy Goodwin: My Life In Media

Daisy Goodwin, 41, is editorial director of TalkbackTHAMES, the independent production company behind some of Britain's best-known TV programmes. Goodwin, who has edited eight poetry anthologies, is leaving Talkback at the end of the month to write a novel and spend more time with husband Marcus Wilford, an ABC TV executive and their two daughters.

Daisy Goodwin, 41, is editorial director of TalkbackTHAMES, the independent production company behind some of Britain's best-known TV programmes. Goodwin, who has edited eight poetry anthologies, is leaving Talkback at the end of the month to write a novel and spend more time with husband Marcus Wilford, an ABC TV executive and their two daughters.

What inspired you to embark on a career in the media?

My dad was a movie producer, my stepmum a film director and my mum a journalist. After studying history, I went to Columbia Film School for two years and wanted to make great historical documentaries.

When you were 15, which newspaper did your family get, and did you read it?

The Daily Mirror and The Guardian.

And what were your favourite TV and radio programmes?

Dad's Army reminded me of school - I was deeply in love with Private Walker - but we didn't have a telly in the house after I was 10. I read lots of very thick Penguin classics and listened to Radio 4, because I wasn't allowed to listen to Capital Radio.

What media do you turn to first thing in the morning?

My morning diet is quite bizarre. Today is on in one corner of the room. My husband is a news junkie, so if he gets up before my daughter he watches BBC News 24, otherwise it'll be Dora the Explorer (on the children's digital channel Nick Jr). I read The Guardian news digest on my BlackBerry, then get the Daily Mail, The Independent and The Times.

Do you consult any media sources during the working day?

I like the media breaking news on my BlackBerry with text alerts. But if I want to know about a story, I just ring up my husband.

What is the best thing about your job?

Making something new, entertaining and informative; that people aren't sure will work - but in the end it does.

And the worst?

When you say with confidence, "I know this will work", and it's a disaster.

What's the proudest achievement in your working life?

I was proud to be associated with the Essential Poems shows; they were genuinely different, bringing poetry to a wider audience and beautifully produced. I was also over the moon when Grand Designs got more than four million viewers.

And what's your most embarrassing moment?

Falling down the stairs spectacularly at the Baftas. I wasn't even drunk. One of the silliest things I did was to turn down Trinny and Susannah, who I thought were too posh to work.

What do watch at home?

We're a demographic nightmare, because we'll watch The X Factor and The OC, followed by a documentary and Newsnight.

What is your Sunday paper? And do you have a favourite magazine?

There are two magazines I read every week: The New Yorker, for its great journalism, and Heat. Harper's Weekly is also very good. I'll read Vogue and keep an eye on the other women's mags. I get Poetry Review and from time to time TLS and Variety. We get all the Sunday papers, but I've adopted a strict rationing policy and like The Observer and The Sunday Times.

Name the one career ambition you want to realise before you retire

To make a programme that my 14-year-old daughter loves.

If you didn't work in the media, what would you do?

I'd be a spy. I studied Russian and waited for a long time to be recruited by MI5. It's my country's loss.

Who in the media do you most admire and why?

I like the prickly geniuses. My top three are Stephen Poliakoff, Peter Moore and Alan Curtis. They've done precisely what they want and are right to do so.

The CV

1983: Graduates in history from Cambridge and attends Columbia Film School as a Harkness scholar.

1985: Joins the BBC as a trainee assistant producer in arts.

1987: Becomes an arts producer-director, but her contract isn't renewed in 1989. She freelances until returning to the BBC in 1992, when she makes Omnibus and devises Bookworm, The Nation's Favourite Poems and Home Front.

1998: Joins TalkbackTHAMES as head of factual. Her production credits for the BBC, Channel 4 and Five are a roll-call of the lifestyle TV format: How Clean Is Your House?, Jamie's Kitchen, House Doctor, Grand Designs and Property Ladder. Her most recent credit is BBC2's The Apprentice with Alan Sugar.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Ashdown Group: Deputy Editor (Magazine Publishing) - Wimbledon - £23-26K

£23000 - £26000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Deputy Editor - Wimbledon...

Ashdown Group: Editor (Magazines/Publishing) - Wimbledon - £26-30K

£26000 - £30000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Editor (Magazines/Publish...

Ashdown Group: Print Designer - High Wycombe - Permanent £28K

£25000 - £28000 per annum + 24 days holiday, bonus, etc.: Ashdown Group: Print...

Guru Careers: Business Development Manager / Sales

COMPETITIVE +Benefits: Guru Careers: A Business Development Manager / Sales (w...

Day In a Page

Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent
Markus Persson: If being that rich is so bad, why not just give it all away?

That's a bit rich

The billionaire inventor of computer game Minecraft says he is bored, lonely and isolated by his vast wealth. If it’s that bad, says Simon Kelner, why not just give it all away?
Euro 2016: Chris Coleman on course to end half a century of hurt for Wales

Coleman on course to end half a century of hurt for Wales

Wales last qualified for major tournament in 1958 but after several near misses the current crop can book place at Euro 2016 and end all the indifference
Rugby World Cup 2015: The tournament's forgotten XV

Forgotten XV of the rugby World Cup

Now the squads are out, Chris Hewett picks a side of stars who missed the cut
A groundbreaking study of 'Britain's Atlantis' long buried at the bottom of the North Sea could revolutionise how we see our prehistoric past

Britain's Atlantis

Scientific study beneath North Sea could revolutionise how we see the past
The Queen has 'done and said nothing that anybody will remember,' says Starkey

The Queen has 'done and said nothing that anybody will remember'

David Starkey's assessment
Oliver Sacks said his life has been 'an enormous privilege and adventure'

'An enormous privilege and adventure'

Oliver Sacks writing about his life
'Gibraltar is British, and it is going to stay British forever'

'Gibraltar is British, and it is going to stay British forever'

The Rock's Chief Minister hits back at Spanish government's 'lies'
Britain is still addicted to 'dirty coal'

Britain still addicted to 'dirty' coal

Biggest energy suppliers are more dependent on fossil fuel than a decade ago
Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition

Orthorexia nervosa

How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Lady Chatterley is not obscene, says TV director

Lady Chatterley’s Lover

Director Jed Mercurio on why DH Lawrence's novel 'is not an obscene story'
Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests

Set a pest to catch a pest

Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests