After filming, I can't wait to shake off all that '50s primness. I'll go out to a gig and dance ridiculously. I love to lose myself in music. Just letting go - it's dead important.
You know that book 'Quiet: the Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking', by Susan Cain? That's like my manifesto. The older I get, the more I think I could be a hermit.
I find that women want to tell me about their birthing experiences. In the most excruciating detail. It's not put me off having children, but I do feel like I know too much.
My first acting experience was a non-speaking role as a robot. My costume was a cardboard box covered in tinfoil, but I was so shy I refused to go on stage.
I grew up just outside Hay-on-Wye, on the borders of Wales, on a farm. It was an amazing childhood, but I got a bit stir crazy when I hit my teens. There was the feeling of having to get out, you know, but it was definitely idyllic.
I've been thinking recently about all the qualities you need in order to be an actor. First and foremost, you've got to have a thick skin and give out an 'I don't give a monkey's what you think' kind of vibe, while at the same time really caring what everyone thinks. You've got to be tough and sensitive at the same time.
I think my dream would be to move into film, purely because there's a definite beginning, middle and end to a project. I struggle a bit with such a big series that's going all the time.
My principal at RADA once told me, 'You'll know you're a professional when you don't feel like doing it but you have to do it.'
I always knew that the only thing I wanted to do was act, but it took me a long time to say it out loud to anyone, let alone myself. I am surprised by how dogged I have been in wanting to make a living as a respected actress.
I have a gorgeous coat that I found at a vintage fair - it's just so elegant. Unfortunately, it has a massive hole underneath the arm, as I think I may have worn it to death!
I have always appreciated vintage clothing, but after working on 'Call the Midwife' for six months, I love moving away from vintage in my day-to-day wear.
I don't want to sound too bleeding heart, because I know how lucky I've been, but I never knew how hard it was to be the lead in a television show.
I'd love to do films, but I'd feel bad in my gut if I did anything just for the money. I want to wait for something I'm really passionate about, even if I don't work for a year.
Schedules on TV are so tight, and it feels like they get tighter and tighter with every passing year. The idea of asking where your character's come from or where they grew up - you would just get a little bit laughed at.
It was a very idyllic childhood, surrounded by utterly beautiful landscapes that I got very, very bored of when I hit my teens. But being on your own a lot and being bored is good for your imagination. It makes it stretch.
You have that moment just before you go on - I've had it in every play - where you just kind of want to run away. There's a whole audience, and they are waiting outside, and you're like, 'Why am I doing this again? Why? Why?'