Last Wednesday, Roald Dahl’s Biographer, Donald Sturrock, Lorin LaFave (mum of murdered schoolboy Breck Bednar), and Olympic gold medallist Rebecca Adlington shared their stories in the first three episodes of a new podcast presented by Children’s Author, Lawrence Prestidge.
Produced by award-winning fellow Author, Giles Paley-Phillips, The Shapes of Stories allows listeners to walk away having learned something different in each episode.
A life-long Dahl fan, Lawrence Prestidge begins by finding out more about his hero’s writing career alongside his personal traumas, including that of losing his first daughter Olivia, to measles encephalitis when she was just seven.
Dahl dedicated both James and the Giant Peach and The BFG to her and spent many years campaigning for parents to get their children immunised to avoid further deaths.
Hard-hitting and poignant, Lorin LaFave tells how her son Breck was groomed online through computer games and then killed by an older teenager in 2014. She has since gone on to set up The Breck Foundation and become an ardent campaigner for children’s safety on the internet.
Olympic gold medallist Rebecca Adlington (pictured right) recalls her time at the hands of online trolls and reveals how she used to sit there and “just cry” at the messages she was being sent.
Propelled into the spotlight at the age of 19, she admits she didn’t expect the torrent of abuse she received: “I was totally blindsided by it at first. I took it really personally. I still don’t understand to this day why you would say not very nice things to someone you don’t know.”
But far from walking away from social media, she dug her heels in and decided to stay to support other teenage girls who also dreamed of succeeding at their swimming careers.
Lawrence himself (pictured below with Lorin LaFave), has been open about his struggle with mental health and how that’s affected him.
He explains: “2020 has been such a difficult year for so many. I wanted to bring The Shapes of Stories to life, to be able to just have chats with people about a wide range of subjects. It’s been a great focus for me to help with my wellness, and I hope it provides others with some great takeaway moments too.”
The Shapes of Stories podcast is available via iTunes, Apple and all other platforms.
As well as the podcast, Lawrence has five published children’s books including Terror at the Sweet Shop, which is being developed into a musical.
When not in lockdown, the popular former SEN and Drama teacher, regularly visits primary and secondary schools across the UK, to help inspire a love of reading and writing.
For more information including interviews with Lawrence Prestidge, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For a taster of The Shapes of Stories please visit https://open.spotify.com/episode/.
*Disclosure: Sponsored post.