Fenland author publishes 25th novel

PUBLISHED: 10:56 13 March 2008 | UPDATED: 08:23 02 June 2010

Story by MAGGIE GIBSON MARCH author Ian Skidmore believes he may have established a publishing record after having his 25th book published in 25 years. Forgive Us Our Press Passes is a hilarious biographical account of his career as a national newspaper a

Story by MAGGIE GIBSON

MARCH author Ian Skidmore believes he may have established a publishing record after having his 25th book published in 25 years.

Forgive Us Our Press Passes is a hilarious biographical account of his career as a national newspaper and freelance journalist in the 1960s and 70s.

Ian, 79, of Elwyn Court, has spent the last quarter of a century subsidising his novels, biographies, histories and anything else he could get a commission for by working as a TV and radio presenter, newspaper columnist, theatre and restaurant critic, and after dinner speaker.

Forgive Us Our Press Passes was first written and published as a slim volume of biography in 1983. It was chosen as the BBC Book of the Year, had the highest listening figures of any book broadcast on Radio Four, and was read twice in its entirety on the BBC Overseas Service.

Actor Ian Carmichael described it as "a comic masterpiece" and said he hoped it would be turned into a TV series so that he could play the role of Ian.

In the past few months Ian has revisited and revised the book, doubling its length by adding more anecdotes about the personalities he encountered during his long career.

Ian, who is married to award-winning children's writer Celia Lucas, writes in the shed at his home. He said: "It is not your typical garden shed. It is packed with books, centrally heated and has its own WC. I like to have some comfort when I am working."

He has one more book coming out this year - a biography of the Welsh painter Sir Kyffin Williams RA - which will make his total 26 in 25 years. He has at least four more books which he describes as being work in progress.

* Forgive Us Our Press Passes by Ian Skidmore is published in paperback by Revel Barker Publishing at £9.95 and is available post free from Wasterstones.co.uk and from all good bookshops.


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