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Harper Lee had a Ghostwriter And Other Stupid Things You've Heard on Bravo
(This week's blog is dedicated to my favorite vocabulary word: weird.)
Wow, that was so weird! Let's recap. Harper Lee, the Pulitzer prize-winning author of To Kill a Mockingbird -- a seminal work on race inequality that is arguably one of the best novels in American literature -- had a ghostwriter it turns out. Yep. Well, at least I'm in good company. But weird, right. Who knew? I'll tell you who knew: Aviva Drescher knew. Not only that, she even knew who the ghostwriter was, and she told us. It was Truman Capote! Now that is just really weird. Don't you think that's weird, guys?
According to Aviva "every writer has a ghostwriter." Well, everyone but Aviva. Isn't that weird? She didn't need a Truman Capote, she just wrote a long email to her team. She’s amazing! Weirdly.
It's true there was a weird unfounded Lee-Capote rumor decades ago that everyone, including Truman Capote, quickly debunked. It was referred to in their circles as the "biggest lie ever told." It's an urban legend, and a really weird and dated one at that. There is also a rumor that Harper Lee contributed significantly to Truman's book In Cold Blood, a rumor that not even Truman disputed. Word On the Street was that she was his ghostwriter. Weird. Right?
No one with half, or even a third of a brain would repeat this silly tale for fear of sounding like a nitwit. But Aviva did. She's fearless. Nothing is too dumb or too nasty for Aviva to repeat on national television. No one is safe. Not me. Not Miss USA. Not even Harper Lee, who was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Debunking Urban Legends
I bet Aviva has a cousin who knows someone who knows someone else who passed out drunk in a hotel one night and woke up in a bathtub short a kidney. Or a babysitter who gets creepy phone calls coming from inside the house. Maybe it's a weird urban legend that "real writers" (as Aviva calls them) hire writers!
"Real writers" don't hire writers. Margaret Atwood doesn't hire writers. Alice Munro doesn't hire writers. Nathan Englander doesn't have a writer on retainer. Call them and ask. It's true. Writers don't hire writers, because they're writers. It doesn't take a village or a team, it takes a writer. It takes one person to write a book. And after it is written it takes a bunch of people to publish it. Come to think of it, it takes more people to conceive a baby, assuming there is a man involved, than to write a book. And, trust me, it’s much more fun!
I'm not ever getting a Pulitzer prize and my books aren't on high school reading lists, but for better or worse I'm a working writer. So, ostensibly, I do care who writes books. Isn't that weird? I built a career over 20 years that I'm proud of, like I should be. Like anyone who spends 20 years building a family should be. Etc.
So let's ask it again. "Who cares who writes books as long as they get written?" Sure. Whatever. Who cares. All the ladies have nannies. Aviva has one or two, and so her nannies raise her kids, right? No one cares who raises kids as long as they get raised? Right? Weird. The way Aviva beats her chest you’d think I accused her of ghost-parenting. She appears to be tone deaf to condescension and insults which probably accounts for her tacky habit of interrupting, and her screaming and that weird chest-pounding thing. I thought she might bust an implant!
I get it. I’m a writer and I've had some success. People like to gossip about people who are successful. Six publishers were in a bidding war for my novel, five of them lost out -- including Aviva's publisher. The publishing industry is not immune to gossips. (I don't want to go over this again. Blah, blah, blah. Read here if you want the back story.) I may not ever be an "important writer," but I do have a brain. And I know our audience does too and sees right through her silly act.
Aviva may have gone to law school but she's no Atticus Finch. Our contracts preclude us from suing each other, which she knows. So it's a weird thing for her to say. But if I did sue I'd hire Harvey that hot lawyer from SUITS. He'd crush her in court. Wait, Harvey is so brilliant, it wouldn't get to court. He'd settle for a large undisclosed amount. I'd buy Sonja's yacht with the money and invite all the girls aboard. Well, almost all. . .
Thanks to all of you. As always,
Writer Girl xoxo
P.S. You can buy the book Aviva thinks I didn't write here and judge for yourself.