Unless you have been living under a rock, a certain memoir is on sale and causing an incredible amount of controversy. I’m not using this space to argue for and against a certain memoir but I often note how interesting it is that the press and the public are so easily distracted by Royalty and how the government uses that distraction to their benefit.
Always look at what isn’t being reported or what is being talked about very little...these are the issues that matter.
Enough on that though.
Last year I began reading more memoirs mainly because I was struggling to get into fiction books, which is not a lovely space to be in when you write mainly fiction. The thing is, truth is stranger than fiction and if you have been paying attention the last few years, these are hard times for fiction writers and to our comrades who work in the dystopian genre, I feel for you.
One of the memoirs I finished end of last year was Fingers Crossed by Miki Berenyi, co-founder of the group Lush. In subsequent interviews about her memoirs there have been questions and accusations of “score settling” and “revenge.”
It got me thinking about the definition of memoir which in its basic form is: a personal account of a time in a person’s life.
This means that when people accuse or criticise someone’s memoir often they dismiss the fact that the account is from the person’s own experience and perspective.
One of the common traits I have found in memoir writing is that often it is a cleansing exercise and that is what interests me. No one wakes up one day and thinks: “Ooh let me write a book that is going to piss everyone I know off.” There is usually something that haunts this person or in some cases a need to tell the story so that they can move on.
I think we can all relate to that feeling.
We live in a world with more forms of communication and no communication at the same time. This is one of the reasons books remain popular and memoirs in particular sell like hot cakes. In a memoir, you have the time and space to tell your story before someone comments idiotically because they read the first three words of your post and assumed the rest.
Also, the great thing about a memoir is that if someone really finds an issue with what is written about them well, they have every right to share their side in their own memoir. I’d actually love to see more of that but then I’m a mischievous sod.
Going back to a certain memoir though...keep an eye on what is happening at Westminster Palace more than Buckingham, the former affects you directly.
John Lugo-Trebble considers this more of a space to engage personal reflections and memories with connections to music and film.