The Hay 30 – Bryony GORDON

In the 15 years that she has worked for The Telegraph, Bryony Gordon has become one of the paper's best loved writers. Her weekly column in the Sunday Telegraph has won her an army of fans who have followed her journey from single girl about town to - finally! - settled mum. Bryony is now 35 and lives in Nappy Valley (Clapham) with her baby daughter Edie and her husband, a financial journalist.

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The Hay 30 is made possible by the generous support of the CASE foundation.

All Events for this artist

Hay Festival 2017

Bryony Gordon and Friends

Mental Health Mates’ Breakfast

Hay Festival 2017, 

Come and join the journalist and author of Mad Girl for a conversation about the friendship and solidarity group she’s set up. Hear how people concerned with mental health issues can support each other.

Bryony Gordon is selected for Hay 30 – celebrating a new generation of thinkers, supported by The CASE Foundation

Hay Festival 2016

Bryony Gordon talks to Clemency Burton-Hill

Mad Girl

Hay Festival 2016, 

On the surface it seems that Bryony Gordon has the perfect life. One of the UK’s most successful journalists, she is married to a man she loves with a two-year-old daughter she adores. Yet things inside Bryony’s head are never as straightforward as they seem. Is it possible that she’s murdered someone and can’t remember? Why did her hair fall out when she was a teenager? Is she capable of hurting her daughter? Has she mysteriously contracted an STD? Why is she always so fat? For while Bryony does have a life many would envy, she is also engaged in a daily battle with mental illness. Fighting with OCD, bulimia and depression, like millions of others in this country, sometimes she finds it a struggle just to get out of bed.

Winter Weekend 2020

Bryony Gordon talks to Poorna Bell

Glorious Rock Bottom

Winter Weekend 2020, 

Bryony Gordon is a respected journalist, author and mental health campaigner. She is also an alcoholic. In Glorious Rock Bottom, she opens up about her toxic 20-year relationship with alcohol and drugs and explains exactly why hitting rock bottom – for her, a traumatic event and the abrupt realisation that she was repeatedly putting herself in danger – saved her life. Known for her honesty, Bryony bravely re-lives the darkest and most terrifying moments of her addiction, taking us on a rollercoaster ride through rehab, AA, painful self-reflection and life-changing friendship to self-acceptance, hope, and a joy and pride in staying sober that her younger self could never have imagined. Bryony’s new book No Such Thing As Normal will be published in January by Headline.

Hay Festival 2015

Bryony Gordon, Mary Riddell, Michael Deacon, Con Coughlin

The Telegraph Question Time

Hay Festival 2015, 

From Farage and the future of Europe to feminism and family life. A stellar team of Telegraph talent ­– columnists Bryony Gordon and Mary Riddell, parliamentary sketch-writer Michael Deacon, and Defence Editor Con Coughlin – tackle the great (and not-so-great) issues of the day. Come along to have your say. Chaired by Emma Barnett, the Telegraph’s award-winning women’s editor.

Hay Festival 2014

Bryony Gordon

The Wrong Knickers: A Decade of Chaos

Hay Festival 2014, 

Like Carrie Bradshaw, Gordon may have had a column in a national newspaper, but her twenties weren’t one long episode of Sex and the City. They were a decade of hangovers, heartbreak, and hideously awkward mornings-after, all over her overdraft limit. She tells the tales to Georgina Godwin.

Hay Festival 2018

Bryony Gordon

Eat Drink Run

Hay Festival 2018, 

Bryony Gordon was not a runner. A loafer, a dawdler, a drinker, a smoker, yes. A runner, no. Yet somehow, as she began to recover from the emotional rollercoaster of laying her life bare in her mental health memoir Mad Girl, she started to realise that getting outside, moving her body and talking to others for whom life was also an occasional challenge, might actually help her. Going for a run might not banish her sadness but at least it might show that she was damn well trying to beat it, which is sometimes half the battle. As she began to run further she started to see the limitations she had imposed on her life more clearly. Why couldn’t she be a runner? Or a bungee jumper? Or a deep-sea diver? Maybe rather than sitting on the sofa watching the world go by, fulfilling your dreams was just about standing up and taking that first step.

Hay Festival 2019

Bryony Gordon

You Got This

Hay Festival 2019, 

The most powerful thing you can be when you grow up is yourself. Mental health activist, bestselling author and journalist Bryony Gordon will share the crucial life lessons she wished she had known when she was a teenager. Join Bryony as she chats about self-respect, body positivity, love, mental health and confidence with Holly Bourne, author of Are We All Lemmings and Snowflakes? Together they will be covering all the tools that any teen needs to grow up happy.


Hay Festival 2019

Bryony Gordon

Wayfaring: Mental Health Mates

Hay Festival 2019, 

Bryony Gordon was inspired by her reading of Carson McCullers, and her understanding of the support of fellowship, to set up Mental Health Mates, a network of peer support groups run by people with mental health issues and their friends who meet regularly to walk and talk. This is now a nationwide organisation. You do not need to have a diagnosed mental health issue to join the walks – everyone has mental health. Walk alongside Bryony Gordon, journalist, campaigner and author of Mad Girl, who will talk about the inspiration of McCullers and writing that can provide solace.

Please wear appropriate footwear. Numbers are limited. Return to Festival site by 11.30am.

See also event [73]

Hay Festival 2017

An all-star cast will take questions from anyone on any topic in or out of the news. Shafak is a Turkish novelist and public intellectual, Rothschild is chair of the National Gallery, Walker is a climate scientist and broadcaster, Mahfouz is an award-winning poet and playwright and Gordon writes for the Telegraph and is a mental health campaigner.

Hay Festival 2017

Jo Malone talks to Bryony Gordon

Hay Festival 2017, 

Jo Malone has created a globally renowned fragrance and beauty business and, more recently, her new brand Jo Loves. She talks about her incredible journey from modest beginnings as a teenager struggling with dyslexia and leaving school with no qualifications, to being diagnosed with breast cancer at 37 and becoming an international brand name and one of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs.

Hay Festival 2017

Julia Leigh talks to Bryony Gordon

Avalanche: A Love Story

Hay Festival 2017, 

Writing in the immediate aftermath of her decision to stop IVF treatment, Leigh lays bare the truths of her experience: the highs of hope and the depths of disappointment, the grip of yearning and desire, the toll on her relationships and the unexpected graces and moments of black humour. She navigates the science of IVF, copes with the impact of treatment and reconciles the seductive promises of the worldwide multi-billion dollar IVF industry with the reality.

Year round events

Laura Bates talks to Bryony Gordon: Men Who Hate Women

September Book of the Month Live Q&A

Year round events, 

We have 50 bookplated copies for pre-order which we can dispatch on the publication date of September 3. (Only signed bookplate copies are available)
Pre-order your signed copy here

The bestselling author and founder of The Everyday Sexism Project talks to Bryony Gordon, journalist and mental health campaigner, whose latest book is Glorious Rock Bottom.

‘Laura Bates has done it again. From bantz to outright brutality, she exposes the landscape of misogyny. Passionate and forensic, Bates produces a powerful feminist clarion call. The world needs to take notice. Things must change.’ -- Anita Anand

Imagine a world in which a vast network of incels and other misogynists are able to operate, virtually undetected. These extremists commit deliberate terrorist acts against women. Vulnerable teenage boys are groomed and radicalised.

You don't have to imagine that world. You already live in it. Perhaps you didn’t know, because we don’t like to talk about it. But it’s time we start.

In this urgent and groundbreaking book, Laura Bates goes undercover to expose vast misogynist networks and communities. It’s a deep dive into the worldwide extremism nobody talks about.

Interviews with former members of these groups and the people fighting against them gives unique insights on how this movement operates. Ideas are spread from the darkest corners of the internet – via trolls, media and celebrities – to schools, workplaces and the corridors of power, becoming a part of our collective consciousness.

Uncensored, and sometimes both shocking and terrifying – this is the uncomfortable truth about the world we live in. And what we must do to change it.
About the Speakers:
Laura Bates studied English at Cambridge University and went on to be a freelance journalist. She has written for the Guardian, the Independent, the New Statesman, Red Magazine and Grazia among others. She is also contributor at Women Under Siege, a New-York based organisation working to combat the use of sexual violence as a tool of war in conflict zones worldwide. She is the founder of the Everyday Sexism Project.
In the 18 years that she has worked for the Telegraph, Bryony Gordon has become one of the paper's best-loved writers. She is the author of the bestselling The Wrong Knickers plus The Sunday Times Number One bestseller Mad Girl which was nominated for a British Book Award. Her weekly column in the Sunday Telegraph has won her an army of fans who have followed her journey from single girl about town to - finally! - settled mum. Bryony is now 37 and lives in Nappy Valley (Clapham) with her daughter Edie and her husband, a financial journalist. The last sentence is one she never thought she would see written down on paper.

Photo credits: Laura Bates © Siggi Holm

Hay Festival 2016

Laura Bates talks to Bryony Gordon

Girl Up

Hay Festival 2016, 

“They told you you need to be thin and beautiful. They told you to wear longer skirts, avoid going out late at night and move in groups – never accept drinks from a stranger, and wear shoes you can run in more easily than heels. They told you to wear just enough make-up to look presentable but not enough to be a slut; to dress to flatter your apple, pear, hourglass figure, but not to be too tarty. They warned you that if you try to be strong, or take control, you’ll be shrill, bossy, a ballbreaker. Of course it’s fine for the boys, but you should know your place. They told you that’s not for girls – take it as a compliment – don’t rock the boat – that’ll go straight to your hips. They told you beauty is on the inside, but you knew they didn’t really mean it. Well I’m here to tell you something different…” Hilarious, jaunty and bold, the founder of the Everyday Sexism Project exposes the truth about the pressures surrounding body image, the false representations in media, the complexities of sex and relationships, the trials of social media and all the other lies they told us.

Hay Festival 2019

Nathan Filer talks to Bryony Gordon

Heartland: Finding and Losing Schizophrenia

Hay Festival 2019, 

How we perceive schizophrenia – and how we treat people living with it – is at the core of how we understand mental health. But what do we really know? How much time do we spend listening? Filer, a mental health nurse and award-winning writer, takes us on a journey into the psychiatric wards he once worked on. He invites us to spend time with world-leading experts, and with some extraordinary people who share their own stories about living with this strange and misunderstood condition.

See also event [36]

Hay Festival 2017

Peter Bazalgette talks to Bryony Gordon

The Empathy Instinct

Hay Festival 2017, 

Empathy is the power of understanding others, imaginatively entering into their feelings. It is a fundamental human attribute without which mutually co-operative societies cannot function. In a revolutionary development, we now know who has it, who lacks it and why. With the MRI scanner, we are mapping the human brain. This is a new frontier that reveals a host of beneficial ideas for childcare, teens challenged by the internet, the justice system, decent healthcare, tackling racism and resolving conflicts.

Hay Festival 2015

Polly Vernon talks to Bryony Gordon

Hot Feminist

Hay Festival 2015, 

A trip through feminism, fashion, the righteous pursuit of a sexy vibe, and what it means to be a woman when you’re on the receiving end of modern media’s hilariously/bizarrely/insanely contradictory/restrictive/reductive/sometimes just straightforward revolting notions of womanhood. This isn’t about what women can’t do, this is a new-age guide to what you can do, what you can think, what you can wear and what you can wax. Gordon is the author of The Wrong Knickers.