Editors Note:


EDITOR'S NOTE: Fresh off a three year managerial stint, your friendly neighborhood lenslinger is back on the street and under heavy deadline. As the numbing effects of his self-imposed containment wear off, vexing reflections and pithy epistles are sure to follow...

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

A Million Little Embellishments?

"Dude, one more thing. You MUST read 'A Million Little Pieces'. IN-credible." I bid Danka adieu and made a note of the title. This was after all, the man who turned me onto 'The Things They Carried', a wrenching tome that's become a treasured part of my overflowing library. A few days later I picked up a copy of 'Pieces', breaking my personal rule of staunchly avoiding Oprah's Book Club choices. But before I could get around to cracking it open, The Smoking Gun accused author James Frey of making up some of the more salacious details of his celebrated memoir. Suddenly I was intrigued, and not just as a potential reader.

As anyone who's read a few of my posts can attest, I'm something of a struggling memoirist myself. This whole blog thing has been a kick, but I'd planned to document my existence long before Al Gore invented the Internets. So it's with great interest that I watched James Frey on Larry King Live last night. Though Frey stood by his book (as did call-in guest Oprah), he didn't deny embellishing parts of his life story. Hmmm. I'm not really sure how I feel about that. Working off memories, compressing time, re-creating conversations you kinda remember; these are things anyone who writes at length about their own life does. But to trump up events to the point of dishonesty strikes me as more than a little skeevy. After all, a memoir is by definition an personal acount of one's time on Earth. Though I think authors are allowed a certain amount of creative liberty, changing the fundamental facts transforms the chronicle into a work of fiction, albeit one closely based on true events.

So here's the deal: Keep reading my drivel and I promise to stick to the facts. I reserve the right to compress time, mind you - but I hereby vow to adhere to (dare I say it) journalistic standards. Hell, if I could write fiction, I would. At least that's what I plan to tell Larry King's cryogenically frozen head, should I ever get the chance. Hey, that reminds me, did I ever tell you about the time I stumbled onto the zombie farm on the outskirts of High Point? It was a calm autumn evening, I remember the way the moonlight glinted off my steely pectorals as I cut down the brain-eaters with nothing more than a tripod leg and half-dead camera battery. It was about that time the Pod People showed up...

2 comments:

HockeyPat said...

What happened when the Pod people showed up?

Edgy Mama said...

Hi, Ashvegas sent me. We started a little blog the other day called www.lielikefrey.blogspot.com. So if you'd like to write more about the zombies, come on over!