New Year is always a time to reflect on what's happened over the previous twelve months - the good and the bad. Friends you've made, loved ones you have lost.
Workwise, 2019 was a great year for me. The move to the evening slot tuirned out to be a great thing, given much of the political breaking news this year occurred in the slot. My TV work mushroomed to the point where I said no to things more often than I said yes, although I appreciate few people will believe that to be true. I've also done more writing for national newspapers than ever before. I did a 24 show run at the Edinburgh Fringe and signed two big book deals. However, all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy and my private life has suffered as a consequence. I've neglected long standing friendships and spent very little time at our house in Norfolk.
So here are my 25 things to remember about 2020 (In no particular order!)...
- Finishing writing WHY CAN'T WE ALL JUST GET ALONG, the seeing publication delayed from May until August. And signing 1500 copies of it.
- Publishing THE PRIME MINISTERS in November, and marshalling all 55 writers to deliver on time! And signing 1100 copies!
- Winning 'Pointless Celebrities' with Jacqui Smith. Recorded in January, but not broadcast until November.
- Walking off set on Good Morning Britain in February.
- 2020 became the second year in a row that I didn't travel abroad. Greta Thurberg is pleased with me.
- Taking a call from Denise in Headley on LBC and then inviting her to co-present the show with me the next night.
- Appearing twice on on Any Questions and not being invited back onto Question Time following my criticism of it after the last time I went on.
- Discovering Zoom and getting used to doing Live TV from my dining room.
- Interviewing Ken Clarke live on stage in Nottingham in February.
- Hosting 6 weekly podcasts.
- Hosting LBC's American election night coverage for the third time, and the second time with Shelagh Fogarty.
- Getting used to watching live football on TV with no crowd, and not attending a proper match since February.
- Appearing at Britain's first Drive-in Literary festival at Appledore in Devon.
- Broadcasting nearly 100 shows from my bedroom during lockdown.
- Taking a call from Cliff in Hoddesdon, whose mother had died from Covid only two hours earlier.
- Chairing the judges for the Orwell Prize Exposing Britain's Social Evils Award.
- Winning, with Jacqui Smith, an award for Civility in Politics for our For the Many podcast.
- Developing further my weekly Sunday evening newsletter which goes to 5,000 people each week.
- Interviewing Mike Pompeo.
- Interviewing Sir Cliff Richard.
- Only being able to go to Norfolk fewer than 8 times in the whole year.
- Not buying a car. Again. Another Greta point earned.
- Appearing on countless other podcasts, the highlight being Matt Forde's Political Party.
- Starting my online shop, which in December transformed into Politicos.co.uk.
- The love of my dogs.