One Minute With: Alastair Campbell
Friday 05 February 2010
Where are you now and what can you see?
I'm driving up the M1 to see the Bolton versus Burnley match and I can see a lorry carrying kitchen equipment in front of me.
What are you currently reading?
Mothers and Sons by Colm Toibin, which I decided to read after Brooklyn, which was absolutely brilliant. I'm going to read Good to a Fault, by Marina Endicott.
Choose a favourite author, and say why you like her/him
Probably Flaubert, because he was the one that really turned me on to the beauty of the French language, which I have never lost and I still read quite a lot of books in French. I started reading Flaubert at school and ended up reading everything he ever wrote.
Describe the room where you usually write
It's on the top floor of our house (in North London). It's very spacious with a wall panelled desk and an exercise bike on which I do some writing, and use my Blackberry.
What distracts you from writing?
Meetings in the diary that I just can't get out of.
Which fictional character most resembles you?
Certainly not Monsieur Bovary! Someone who I don't necessarily identify with but whose values I would like to uphold is Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird.
What are your readers like when you meet them?
A real cross section. Some are interested in politics, but after I wrote my first novel, which was about mental health. they were people who came up to me and said 'my dad had this, or my mother had that...'
Who is your hero/heroine from outside literature?
Nelson Mandela comes very close. I have met him and the hairs on your neck stand to attention every time.
Alastair Campbell's novel, 'Maya', is published by Hutchinson
Potter's attempt to create an Essex Taj Mahal was a lovely treattv
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Crystal meth addict 'gouged out his eyes and ate them' while high on drug, Australian MP claims
- 2 As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
- 3 The ten most unequal developed countries in the world
- 4 Saudi Arabia 'seeking to head United Nations Human Rights Council'
- 5 Toddler throws a tantrum at the White House – in front of Barack Obama
Cannes Film Festival rejects women from red-carpet screening of pro-LGBT romance 'Carol' for not wearing high heels
Game of Thrones rape scene criticised as 'disgusting' by US senator Claire McCaskill who says she's 'done' with show
Beyonce angers fans by pouring expensive champagne into hot tub in Nicki Minaj 'Feeling Myself' video
Mad Men, TV review: Perfect harmony? Not quite, but an enlightening finale for Don Draper
Theresa May accused of seeking to introduce state censorship of the media by Cabinet colleague Sajid Javid
As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
Scotland may have to leave the EU even if it votes to stay in, David Cameron confirms
Report finds that Britain's wages are the most unequal in Europe
Almost a third of school pupils believe 'Muslims are taking over our country', study claims
The day that Britain resigned as a global power
Gay marriage 'Bert and Ernie' cake bakery found guilty of discrimination in Northern Ireland