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Why Alastair Campbell turned down the money

John Rentoul

acpm 300x244 Why Alastair Campbell turned down the moneyAlastair Campbell has a great line in a waspish article in The Daily Telegraph today on the virtues of keeping a diary rather than writing a memoir based on hazy recollection. Just in case we were unsure to whom he was referring, he corrects a point of detail in Peter Mandelson’s The Third Man, serialised in The Pay Wall Times this week.

Campbell says he agonised about selling the serial rights to his diaries when the first, edited version was published three years ago:

I called my agent Ed Victor and asked him to pull the plug on the large deal he had been negotiating for my diaries. I am not criticising those who do, but I worried about ceding to others the way the book was portrayed. Ed took my news as well as could be expected for someone on 15 per cent of any deal struck.

Tony Blair has made a similar decision not to sell the serialisation rights to A Journey, his memoir to be published in September. No doubt for similar reasons.

This week, those reasons suddenly became clear to Campbell’s agent. Campbell reports that Victor has emailed him:

I assume your worry was that they would make you wear a cravat.

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  • Rick Role

    The ties that bind us.

  • aardvark10

    JR’s obsession with the Daily Mail is well known. Clearly he doesn’t believe a single word. Interesting, then, that he quite readily accepts that not only Blair is completely truthful, Alastair Campbell is also. Most are happy to accept a much less polarised position. In fact if it comes to a choice between the Daily Mail (or any other newspaper) and Campbell, I know which I prefer!

  • http://twitter.com/charlesbarry Charles Barry

    I pity you.

  • aardvark10

    Keep your pity to yourself. Presumably you are quite happy to lend your support to a man who lied and misled the British people when formulating the case to go to war in Iraq – that’s up to you, but one thing you must agree with – the actions of Blair and Campbell in this matter mean that never again will we wage such a war under similar circumstances. A very serious matter, not reflected in your three word observation.

  • takeoman

    Yes Alastair has a history of correcting points of detail,not always accurately.

  • bobbellinhell

    Spin the dial Mr Rentoul!

  • Bob Bell in hell

    Spin the dial Mr Rentoul!


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