Some Old Bloke
Back Bobby's new autobiography!
24 March, 2017
With a regular sideline in book-writing alongside his Red Dwarf job, it's no surprise that Robert Llewellyn has already shown himself to be pretty great at writing autobiographies, with The Man in the Rubber Mask and Thin He Was And Filthy Haired telling fascinating stories about various earlier stages of his career. We're delighted, then, to learn that he's got another one planned on the way, bringing us up to date on his six decades of experiences of the world.
Some Old Bloke has come about in slightly unusual circumstances - you might recall that since last year, Robert has been seeking backing on the Unbound crowdfunding platform to get his novel Josh Joshi and the Great Divide published. But inspired by recent events, he's had a change of heart - we'll let him take up the story:
For the last two years I have been 'writing a book.'
It was going well. It even had a couple of jokes in it.
And then Brexit happened.
Shortly afterwards, Trump happened.
I wasn't surprised by either result.
However, it totally put the kybosh on Josh Joshi and the Great Divide.
It's not that I couldn't ever write it, it's more I can't write it now.
The upheavals are so dramatic, so game changing that none of us have had enough time to absorb the possible consequences.
However all is not lost, well, let's hope so for the entire world, but in the microcosm of Unbound and my next book, all is also not lost.
For the past several years I have been gathering notes, old diaries, pictures and ideas for a light hearted but occasionally philosophical autobiography.
A couple of years ago, after a Christmas Day family dinner, my wonderful son scrawled a drawing of me which he titled, 'Some Old Bloke.'
I kept the drawing, it's not flattering, the description of his father as some old bloke made me laugh so much I almost choked on my mince pie.
Some Old Bloke.
It felt right, it fitted like an old coat. It may change, but at time of writing that's the title of my autobiography.
So here's the choice for the amazing people who put their faith and money in me and Josh Joshi.
No one is going to think badly of you if you say, 'Screw that, I want my money back.'
But just before you do storm off in a huff, here's the bit I hadn't mentioned.
I have written about 20,000 words of Josh Joshi and the Great Divide and I will include that. I am converting it into a short story which will be at the back of the book.
I will also include several other book ideas I've worked on but never revealed or published.
I will also include, and this is deeply humiliating, a work diary I have kept from 1986 to the present day.
A beat by beat history of the painful process of putting on plays, writing books that never got published, some that did get published, sudden explosions of interest from film companies that came to nothing.
Dozens of pitch meetings and re-writes and rejections.
It's a revealing insight into the struggles of a largely self-educated writer and the endless pitfalls, rejections and half-baked mistakes I've made.
If nothing else, it reveals the truth that with bottomless determination and perseverance, even a thicko like me can eventually get a book published.
So, I hope you'll consider it.
As Robert notes, The Man in the Rubber Mask has already fairly extensively covered his life as Kryten - but we'd be amazed if Red Dwarf didn't still find its way into this book in plenty of places, to say nothing of all the other fascinating stuff he's done.
If you hadn't already backed Josh Joshi and think that this sounds worthy of your time, you can back the book over at Robert's Unbound page. Pledges start at £10 for an eBook edition, with various rewards including launch party invites at the higher tiers. At the time of writing, the book is 64% funded - Robert hasn't had an Unbound book fail to meet its target yet, so let's see this one over the line!
Find out more about crowdfunding new writing at Unbound!