And I mean Augusten, not William.
I’m too lazy to dig up the articles that were previously posted about Burroughs and his autobiographies and how some people said they were made up. Some people got agitated and grumbley about it.
Then I read this.
My favorite quote: “Any writer has the right to shape materials, and undoubtedly Steinbeck left things out. That doesn’t make the book a lie.”
Now, obviously some of the flak Burroughs got was from the people he was writing about and how “he was telling lies,” but some people (and this is what I’d like to focus on) were upset because he lied in an autobiography.
Just seemed a study in contrasts at least.
Though, the quote above does make me think how much needs to change before an autobiography becomes a lie?
And can a book ever lie? (Assuming it’s not for educational purposes. I hope those don’t lie…too often.) I think something was said about books that ‘the truth the reader takes from them is the truth that the book held.’
(Side note: if you try to figure out the correct quote in google by searching for “the truth of a book” you won’t find the answer, but you will learn that Jehovah’s Witnesses have something called The Truth Book and there is a book about escaping childhood abuse among them of the same name.)