This is an extremely difficult thing for me to write because for this Beyond The Title interview I’m not profiling and celebrating the career of someone whom I admire. Nor am I featuring a recognised household name or discussing a topic of popular culture with a highly esteemed public figure. Instead to mark the release of my new book Beyond The Title: The Yearbook, I’m taking the unique opportunity to celebrate and reflect upon Beyond The Title’s greatest moments of the last four years. Released on Thursday 27th August, Beyond The Title: The Yearbook relives some of my favourite interviews with some of Britain’s biggest stars together with a social deconstruction of the world they live in.
I began compiling the book during the summer of 2019 and was shocked by how easy it was to get it all on paper. For this I was required to go back and revisit each and every interview; how I secured them, the process of shaping my structure and my initial thoughts on meeting them. It occurred to me that having done so many interviews, I hadn’t stopped to compartmentalise the whole process. On reflection I had interacted with some of the most prolific faces in Britain, yet to me it was just what I did. Such a growing platform was too good to just use as a disposable archive and so I started to think about ways to preserve this catalogue of cultural insights.
So for the best part of nine months, I’ve been beavering away writing up over forty of my best interviews and attempting to remember the hurdles I overcame when securing them. I didn’t want to write a shallow catalogue on celebrities, I felt like I had something to say about the phenomenon of fame and where these figures sat in the psyche of the nation. It occurred to me that whenever I do an interview I automatically have another small piece of the entertainment jigsaw. Therefore if I were to put all those pieces together what would they say about the entertainment landscape of 2020? And could I draw comparisons and contrasts between my subjects? These aspects were too widespread to just sum up in just a paragraph so I figured it would be the perfect opportunity to explore this in greater detail.
This book has been a real labour of love over the past year and I just hope that you have as much joy reading it as I did writing it. Beyond The Title: The Yearbook is published by Book Reality and will be available from any online book outlets from the 27th August. A big thanks to the writer and broadcaster Simon Clark for participating in this special podcast and hope to see you at my various events in 2021.