Thursday, March 06, 2008

Narrative Trope or Narrative Tripe?

This morning Steve Almond has an instructive article in The Boston Globe about the faked memoir business.

If agents and publishers and the reading public want "true" stories, then writers are up against the wall and wanting to be published, they cave and pen fake memoirs as Margaret Seltzer did in Love and Consequences. "Truth and Consequences" might have been an apter title.

The Wall Street Journal weighed in with "would you rat out a relative?" and most people would indeed, if said relative lied about the family. (Sara Schaefer Munoz) Denying your life is ugly, the opposite of memoir.

Everyone has an opinion, and as someone who has been trying for years and years with only small (very small) success to publish my novels, I can sympathize with these authors, although their comuppance is deserved.

Reality TV rules, but I never watch that, either. Right now I'm mesmerized by "In Treatment" which seems so real one feels like a fly on the wall of the psychiatrist's office. But it's a story. Story. What a good word!

What is real? Spring approaches! I heard a peewee calling in the woods today and spied two robins by the cemetery. The squirrels were playing tag, and I got so inspired I cleaned off the leaves over the storm drain. The chives are up an inch, and I could get thyme,oregano and sage if I wanted to.

Write something good. Write something true and write the best way you know. Truthfully.


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