8.07.2005

I'm not the only one thinking about Whose Life is It Anyway!

Great minds working alike of course.

Slinking through
Sarah's blogroll turned up
Bella Stander writing about her experience with a friend who fancied herself the Anais Nin of the New Century:
(let's all remember too that Anais Nin REGULARLY edited, deleted, added and othewise doctored up her "diaries" for effect)

The last part of the post is here:

"However, this affair caused me to think about some larger issues. Namely: Whose story is it? When you write about your own experiences, where do you draw the line between your life and others'? Whose memory is right? (think of "Rashomon") And what do you owe the people you write about? Do you describe them and your feelings about them exactly, even though it might hurt them? Do you ask permission to write about them? Do you even tell them at all--and if you don't, are you opening yourself up to legal action?"

Interesting questions, and ones we're going to see a lot more about.

The blogoshpere is all atwitter about people getting fired for bad blogging judgement; Augusten Burroughs has a big fat lawsuit on his hands now for Running With Scissors, his memoir; not to mention Judith Regan chasing down murderer's ex girlfriends waving a book contract... with the wealth of platforms to talk about ourselves, it's gonna get worse before it gets better.

Miss Snark is now off to hid the gin pails from those sneaky Page Six photoboys.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

This is why many so-called novels are actually memoirs in disguise.

Anonymous said...

The incidents listed notwithstanding, publishing history is replete with examples of people who were certain they were profiled in some hapless writer's novel, when the writer had never given them a thought. Probably almost as many who were certain the writer had "stolen" their opus, great novel idea, epic brilliance, etc...

kitty said...

I'm thinking Carrier Fisher's roman a clef Postcards From the Edge and the mother figure.

Jamie said...

Tying together your previous post with this one, there's a book about writing I really enjoyed called The Courage to Write: How Writers Transcend Fear by Ralph Keyes. There's a whole chapter about the pitfalls of putting family and friends into print. In it, I found these gems:

"Isn't disloyalty as much the writer's virtue as loyalty is the soldier's?" -- Graham Greene

"My art is more important than my friend." -- Willa Cather

And my personal favorite:

"Everything goes by the board: honor, pride, decency, security, happiness--all to get his book written. If a writer has to rob his mother, he will not hesitate: the 'Ode on a Grecian Urn' is worth any number of old ladies."--William Faulkner

Whoa, you go Bill.

Anyway, I found it interesting to learn that even before blogging, writers were selfish jerks.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a post to write.

kitty said...

My family tree has a few choice gems ... especially my husband's gnarly tree :)

Richard said...

Che Bella! (not Belle)

Miss Snark said...

BellA. I fixed it. Let me know if it's right.
Thanks.
MS

melinama said...

I like that you put the e in judgement. I got talked out of it about a year ago but I still resent leaving it out. Almost enough to stop using the word.