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Dolly Alderton reveals why Everything I Know About Love differs from book

The series stars Emma Appleton as Maggie - a fictionalised version of Alderton.

Everything I Know About Love
BBC
Published: Tuesday, 7th June 2022 at 9:00 am
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Everything I Know About Love, the adaptation of Dolly Alderton's memoir, is about to start airing on BBC One, but fans of the book will find that the show doesn't follow its source material entirely.

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While Alderton was on script duty for the new series, which follows four friends in their first London houseshare, she has chosen to semi-fictionalise the autobiographical book, changing storylines and character names and traits. For instance, in the series Dolly has become Maggie, as played by Emma Appleton.

At an event attended by RadioTimes.com and other press, Alderton explained that changing the series to be semi-fictional was "the most freeing thing that happened", and that she chose to do so after hearing producers having a debate about "Dolly's character".

Alderton explained: "I just thought, 'This is going to be too much of a head-f**k'. So I just decided to change the names and then I decided to kind of open up the world, because the really s**t thing about writing a memoir – other than all the exposure and the therapy you have to do - is you're limited by what happened in real life, and real life can be very unsatisfying and one note.

"It's my favourite thing when I see a one-star review on Amazon – people say, 'The plot wasn't satisfying'. I’m like, 'Try living it'. So the minute that I kind of decided to open that up and take the essence of the show, which is this kind of grand romantic story about female friendship, and a coming of age story for the protagonist, and a girl gang show with this group of girls who have just moved to London, then the rest of it was as imagined as I wanted it to be."

Asked what it was like seeing moments from her real life recreated, Alderton said it was "really trippy and weird".

"It was trippy when I was in Maggie’s childhood home and cutting out pictures of Will Young to put on her bedroom wall," Alderton continued. "And it was trippy when I saw the most embarrassing thing that's ever happened to me in my romantic life ever re-enacted by Street and Maggie, and I was sitting cringing behind a monitor."

One thing that won't have brought back memories for Alderton was the design of the characters' shared house, as she admitted that the one in the series is "a tiny bit nicer" than hers was.

"It was hard because [director] China [Moo-Young] and I were so keen to keep it real, but you've got to want to spend time there," Alderton explained. "So yeah, we compromised a bit."

Everything I Know About Love starts tonight (7th June 2022) on BBC One and BBC iPlayer. Check out our Drama hub for more news, interviews and features or find something to watch with our TV guide.

You can purchase the book of Everything I Know About Love on Amazon here.

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