Alastair Campbell was born in Keighley, Yorkshire in 1957, the son of a vet. After graduating from Cambridge University in modern languages, his first chosen career was journalism, principally with the Mirror Group, a career interrupted in the mid-80s by a nervous breakdown and the diagnosis of a drink problem. Campbell worked his way back to become a political editor and when Tony Blair became leader of the Labour Party, he asked Campbell to be his press secretary. He worked for Blair - first in that capacity, then as official spokesman and director of communications and strategy - from 1994 to 2003, and returned in 2005 to help Labour win a third election. He now splits his time between writing, speaking, consultancy and charity, as chairman of fundraising for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research, and a leading ambassador for the mental health campaign, Time to Change.
He lives in North London with his partner of 33 years, Fiona Millar. They have three children. His interests include running, cycling, bagpipes and Burnley Football Club. He has published five volumes of diaries, including the bestselling The Blair Years, a memoir on depression, The Happy Depressive, a novel about fame, Maya, and his first acclaimed novel about mental illness, All in the Mind.