Tuesday, March 4, 2008

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Pick my fake memoir title!!

The New York Times' Motoko Rich reports on the latest memoir scandal:

In “Love and Consequences,” a critically acclaimed memoir published last week, Margaret B. Jones wrote about her life as a half-white, half-Native American girl growing up in South-Central Los Angeles as a foster child among gang-bangers, running drugs for the Bloods.

The problem is that none of it is true.

Margaret B. Jones is a pseudonym for Margaret Seltzer, who is all white and grew up in the well-to-do Sherman Oaks section of Los Angeles, in the San Fernando Valley, with her biological family. She graduated from the Campbell Hall School, a private Episcopal day school in the North Hollywood neighborhood. She has never lived with a foster family, nor did she run drugs for any gang members. Nor did she graduate from the University of Oregon, as she had claimed....

The revelations of Ms. Seltzer’s mendacity came in the wake of the news last week that a Holocaust memoir, “Misha: A Mémoire of the Holocaust Years” by Misha Defonseca, was a fake, and perhaps more notoriously, two years ago James Frey, the author of a best-selling memoir, “A Million Little Pieces,” admitted that he had made up or exaggerated details in his account of his drug addiction and recovery.

Once you hit three examples, a media trend is officially declared. Since I am such a slavish follower of these trends, I have decided to write my own fake memoirs!!

My problem is that it strains credulity for me to claim the kind of drug or criminal experiences that Frey and others concocted. So, clearly, I need to devise a plausible set of fake bad behaviors that I can use to hawk my own fake memoirs.

Afer racking my brain for a few seconds, I have come up with three possible fake memoir titles. Let me know in the comments which one you prefer -- or come up with one of your own!!:

1) Confessions of a Housing Hit Man: Why I Helped Blow Up the Housing Bubble (With the Help of, You Know, the People Who Decided to Buy the Houses) and Now Regret It.

2) I Am Sprezzatura: How I Made a Living Writting 95% of All Comments in the Blogosphere

3) Not Just a Gigolo: My Life and Times in Hollywood Servicing the Body and Mind of Salma, Ashley, Angelina, Scarlett, Tina, Jessica, Jessica, and Jessica... but mostly Salma.

UPDATE: I forgot... fake names for the fake memoir title would be appreciated. Come to think of it, there should be a formula for this kind of thing, like figuring out your porn star name.

I hereby declare the formula to determine your Fake Memoir Name to be......drumroll..... the first name of your gender-appropriate paternal grandparent + the last name of your first-grade teacher.

In which case, my Fake Memoir name is.... Lou Hayes.

posted by Dan on 03.04.08 at 08:59 AM


The formula is nice but I'm afraid no one will buy anything form someone named Bud Wort.

posted by: Keith on 03.04.08 at 08:59 AM [permalink]

"The Deep Throat Economist: How I Manipulated Alan Greenspan's Most Important Decisions"

posted by: Jim Esten on 03.04.08 at 08:59 AM [permalink]

Between A Rock, Iraq and a Hard Place: My Secret Life as George Bush's Crack Dealer, Middle East Advisor and Lover; by RC McGavin. (Joe Wilson has already blurbed it.)

posted by: tom on 03.04.08 at 08:59 AM [permalink]

Bud Wort is not as bad as my fake memoir name: "I-don't-know-his-name-but-he-got-my-grandmother-pregnant-in-1926-then-skipped-off-to-Venezuela Wharton." Honestly, it doesn't matter the title of the memoir, the author's name along would sell a few.

posted by: Bill on 03.04.08 at 08:59 AM [permalink]

Orlo Lenihan? I guess it has a ring to it.

posted by: Jim on 03.04.08 at 08:59 AM [permalink]

How about danieldreznermemoirs.com?

posted by: Zathras on 03.04.08 at 08:59 AM [permalink]

Harry Butts. For real.

posted by: Useless Sam Grant on 03.04.08 at 08:59 AM [permalink]

Ambrose Kula? Sounds like a drug runner to me.

posted by: Alex Strittmatter on 03.04.08 at 08:59 AM [permalink]

The name: Leonard Cone (I used my maternal grandfather, as I am named after my paternal grandfather)

The memoir: Blame Canada -- My Secret Role In Our Northern Neighbor's Secret Plan To Cause Global Warming and Grow Marijuana Where Polar Bears Roam

posted by: Appalled Moderate on 03.04.08 at 08:59 AM [permalink]

I went to Catholic school, our teachers didn't have last names.

posted by: Mitchell Young on 03.04.08 at 08:59 AM [permalink]

The Memoir Name - Barry Turner

The Memoir - Beyond All Boundaries: One man's quest to rediscover the lost art of cow brain soup among the landmine-infested mountains of Iraqi Kurdistan.

posted by: Jonathan Dworkin on 03.04.08 at 08:59 AM [permalink]

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