Journalist and author Paul Kimmage has shed further light on a row “over a very silly little interview” that determined his parting of ways with Brian O'Driscoll as ghostwriter to the former Ireland star’s recent autobiography.
Kimmage explained the background to the row that resulted in the Sunday Independent writer dropping out of the O’Driscoll project, which then saw Alan English taking over as ghostwriter.
“It was over a very silly little interview he gave,” Kimmage said on RTÉ Radio 1 this morning, appearing on Today with Sean O’Rourke alongside fellow journalists Orla Bannon and Frank McNally, reviewing the best sports books of 2014.
“I had asked him to give an interview for the Sunday Independent, I had just got a job back. I had been unemployed for 18 months. He was giving an interview to the Irish Times.
“I asked him could you just hold off on that and give it to me, it would make my life an awful lot easier. He couldn’t do that for his own reasons, which I respect totally.
“We would have had some serious arguments [if they continued working on the book], as you do with every project you take on.”
Kimmage said the row came just as he was about to present the first 20,000 words of the project and said that O’Driscoll had not read them.
“I just know the bits that were left out and the bits that were left out were very interesting" - Paul Kimmage
He also said what he produced was “very different to what he did with Alan [English]. Very, very different.”
Kimmage admitted he had not read O’Driscoll’s book ‘The Test’ since it was published last month, saying: “I had transcribed 600,000 words of this, so I don’t need to read it.
“I just know the bits that were left out and the bits that were left out were very interesting.
“Probably a bit more interesting than some of the bits that were left in. That again is Brian's choice.”
The book won ‘Irish Sports Book of the Year’ for 2014, which is voted for by the public, and overcame strong competition from Roy Keane’s memoir ‘The Second Half’, ghosted by Roddy Doyle, and ‘The Race to Truth’ by Emma O’Reilly.
For more listen to Today with Sean O'Rourke, weekdays from 10am on RTÉ Radio One