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‘Stop complaining!’ Richard Coles opens up about rivalry with BBC’s Richard Osman

Rev Richard Coles joins Hamza Yassin snorkelling in Scotland

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Richard Osman, 51, has made a rather successful career for himself, not only starting and presenting Pointless, but he also has a successful career as a novelist. Richard Coles, 60, recently released his own novel and was asked in an interview if he felt competition against the best-selling novelist Richard.

Stop complaining!

Richard Coles

The Pointless host released his debut novel The Thursday Murder Club in 2020, with the book becoming a Sunday Times Bestseller within days.

The novel follows a group of pensioners as they set about solving the murder of a property developer in a retirement village in Kent.

Due to its success, Reverend Coles decided to have a go at novel writing, with Murder Before Evensong: A Canon Clement Mystery, coming out on June 9.

Similarly, the novel is set in a village and involves several murders.

Coles was asked in an interview if he was feeling a rivalry to have the same success as the Pointless star.

He said: “I’m a mere foothill to his Himalaya.

“In fact, I phoned him up the other day for advice on how to get through these enormous piles of books they give you for signatures.

“He was very encouraging and supportive. And what was his advice?

“Put on a podcast and stop complaining”, he concluded to Radio Times.

Coles first became known as part of the 1980s band The Communards, with the group achieving three top ten hits.

This included the bestselling 1986 song Don’t Leave Me This Way.

After this, the reverend’s life took a drastic change when he started a career as a writer and journalist, then shortly after, moved to The Church of England.

He began his religious career shortly after the musical duo disbanded and was ordained in 2005.

Coles worked at churches in Lincolnshire and London before being appointed the vicar of St Mary the Virgin, Finedon in 2011.

Sadly, in 2019, his partner David, who he entered a civil partnership with in 2010, died.

He died at Kettering General Hospital in December 2019 and last year Richard revealed it was due to a long battle with alcohol.

With this giant change in his personal life, the vicar recently decided to retire from parish duties at his church in rural Northamptonshire, and instead volunteer with prisoners.

Coles said: “When your life partner dies what dies with them is your future and I realised I wanted to be with people who I love and care about and know well and it just so happens that some of them live in Sussex and one of my oldest friends, a house two doors up from hers was up for sale, and she said ‘why don’t you move here’ so I did.

“I think David on a good day would have wanted me to face forwards and step forwards; on a bad day he’d have loved me to stay at home stirring polenta and thinking of him again.

“But it’s just part of the process of bereavement, you get used to a world in which the other person’s not in it and then you start thinking, ‘well, I’m in it’, so what am I going to do?

“I think I’ve got some more to do.”

You can read the full interview in this week’s Radio Times

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