Desert Island Discs was created by Roy Plomley in 1942, and the format is simple: a guest is invited by Kirsty Young to choose the eight records they would take with them to a desert island
July 14th, 2013
Episode 345 of 579 episodes
The writer, Val McDermid, is interviewed by Kirsty Young for Desert Island Discs. Crime fiction is Val's chosen genre and the millions of novels she sells examine and dissect the darkest recesses of human behaviour. Domestic violence, murder, abduction - it's difficult to imagine a subject she'd shy away from. She once described herself as "A mixture of hard bitten cynical hack and Pollyanna". Brought up in a secure home by parents who were very happily married, she was the first Scot from a state school to win a place at St Hilda's college, Oxford. She was just 16. After graduation she chose tabloid journalism as her trade and by all accounts fitted right in with the hard working, bolshy, boozing culture at the time. She says "I think there are three elements to any literary career. You have to have a modicum of talent, you've got to work hard . and you've got to be lucky." Producer: Isabel Sargent.