Nina Pottell
A DAY IN THE LIFE OF…. Nina Pottell by SJV
2016/12/06  |  By:   |  Features  |  

Nina Pottell, book lover, Guardian columnist, blog contributor, Prima magazine book reviewer, blogger and, of course, hairdresser to the stars – welcome to TeamBATC and thank you so much for agreeing to come and play ‘A Day in The Life Of…’.

We know you are a total book geek, but can you tell us how you went from being a reader the same as many of us, to one of social media’s biggest and best book influencers?

I was part of a readers panel for PanMacmillan about 4 years ago. The group read 6 books over 18 months. It was fantastic to discuss books in detail, meet the authors, and the amazing PanMac team. To keep in touch with the others I joined Twitter and I discovered this whole book community on there.  I saw that there was a lot of talk about books pre publication. Plucking up courage I asked for a proof of The Miniaturist and my book tweeting began.  The rest is history!

You’re also now the book reviewer for Prima magazine – WOWZERS right?

Yes WOWZERS!! The utmost thanks to Fanny Blake and Cathy Rentzenbrink for recommending me. I never thought I would ever be reviewing books for a magazine.

How does it feel to be the go-to hairdresser for the entire publishing industry?

I love it. Perfect client for me because we get to talk books too. It’s a mix of industry people and authors. I do have to restrain myself at book events sometimes to not touch or juuz someone’s hair…..

Is there such a thing as a typical day, and if so what does it look like?

Never. I’m in the salon 4 days a week. This can mean 8+ clients back to back. Opening book post and tweeting. Maybe a book event after work. And reading of course! And sometimes my day is only cutting and colouring clients hair whilst I gaze at my book I want to read. 

Any burning desire to write a novel yourself?

I have no head for fiction. Will leave that to the experts.

I’m sure you must get asked this 100 times a day, but, for the record, what do you look for when selecting your next read?

I LOVE debuts so this will always entice me. Cover and blurb. I always read the first page of everything I pick up before buying. Also recommendations from those I trust.

I’m obsessed with other peoples TBR piles, how high is yours? And do you have 2, one for work books and one for pleasure books?

Really high! I need a new home is the easiest answer for this! At present I have about 80 2017 publications as possibles for Prima…..I don’t have separate piles as I feel what I read for pleasure works for work. 

Is there an author you’d sell a limb to have in your chair?

Every author whose book I fall in love with I want in my chair!

We know you love a FROW at a book event or festival – what is it for you about getting up close and personal with authors?

Firstly I’m partially deaf so it means I’ve got a better chance of hearing what they’re saying and I just find authors extremely interesting. Why and how they write etc. 

What book have you most recommended to others this year?

There’s been a few but definitely Five Rivers Met On A Wooded Plain by Barney Norris. 

And lastly our quick fire trivia round…

Favourite literary hero? Oh gosh, far too many….

Spring or Autumn? Autumn

GBBO or Strictly Come Dancing? Strictly

What’s your signature dish? Risotto

The Night Manager or The Fall? The Fall

Favourite place to read? On the tube!!!

Netflix and chill, or paint the town red? I had my time painting the town bright red so definitely indoors now.

What’s the secret to success? Hard work, passion, determination

Flats or heels? Flats as I’m prone to falling over in heels which isn’t a good look

Famous last words? Look where you’re going and not where you’ve been or something with a swear word in….