One year on…and the page that didn’t make it….

It has been a year since Billy, Me & You was published and what a year! but more of that later…

My preoccupation lately has been with “the Jimmy Savile page” that didn’t get from Liquorice Magazine to the final book. Here it is

I was wanting to explain in the narrative how something can sound wrong, like “a funny book about death” but actually work. This page was based on a conversation with Marcia Mihotich about how when she first heard about Jimmy Savile on arrival to the UK from New Zealand, she just thought he sounded like a paedophile, but of course, she was assured, he was a well loved national treasure….eh hem!

Why didn’t it get through to the final book?Liquorice Magazine was where chapters of the book were first published. With a small subscription base, it offered me first readers. I asked one of them, Sarah Lightman, if there was any part she didn’t “get”. She referenced these pages. I realised that, because she is younger than me, Jimmy Savile probably didn’t resonate as such a massive cultural icon for her as for me. I needed references that all my readers got if I was going to use them.

Anyway, so what? After publication, when Channel 4 News made a short film about me and the book, we were waiting for it to go out at the weekend. It was due to go out one evening and was postponed at about 3pm by the death of Jimmy Savile. SO if I had included the page everyone would have “got” it, because there were so many tributes. BUT when he was announced more recently as a paedophile it would have completely messed up my analogy. In which case just as well it got left out. AND we must always listen to Marcia because she was right all along!

And now I must add some posts on highlights from the year…

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