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I Was Short and Ugly and I Had a Speech Impediment

My Life as a Young Thug (Mike Tyson, for New York magazine)
posted by box on Oct 22, 2013 - 17 comments

"Blogging: No Cat Required."

Recently, Geek & Sundry's Story Board Hangout hosted an episode called Life Online: Putting the Meme in Memoir and it featured Wil Wheaton [previously], MeFi's Own John Scalzi, and the Bloggess, Jenny Lawson [previously 1, 2]. It is, naturally, quite entertaining. [via]
posted by quin on Jan 28, 2013 - 2 comments

I found so much good information I put it all in. Overkill.

Remember me? I'm the kid who had a report due on space neat blog about growing up Freberg. [more inside]
posted by infinitewindow on Feb 2, 2012 - 16 comments

Elias Canetti

Elias Canetti is regarded by many as one of the century’s most distinguished writers. At least since he was awarded the Nobel Prize, in 1981, he has been regularly compared, if not to Proust or Joyce or Mann, then certainly to his Viennese brethren Robert Musil and Hermann Broch. Yet one suspects that, in America at leasts Canetti’s works have been rather more respected than read. This is particularly true in the case of the two long and difficult books upon which his reputation mainly rests: Auto-da-Fé (1935), his first and only novel, and Crowds and Power (1960), the meticulously idiosyncratic contribution to social theory that he considers his major work. - Roger Kimball [more inside]
posted by Trurl on Dec 13, 2011 - 13 comments

Linda Ronstadt to publish memoirs

Linda Ronstadt plans to publish her autobiography (aptly titled “Heart Like a Wheel”). Linda Ronstadt is one of the most versatile and commercially successful female singers in U.S. history, recognized for her many public stages of self-reinvention and incarnations.” [more inside]
posted by I_Love_Bananas on Nov 30, 2011 - 39 comments

Memoirs of the Great Patriotic War

A collection of first-person accounts of the men and women who defended the Soviet Union against the Fascist invasion, and eventually participated in the race to Berlin. via the War Nerd
posted by pompomtom on Apr 18, 2011 - 22 comments

"The accidental memorist"

When writer Robin Romm's mother was dying of cancer, she started keeping a journal--writing from the trenches. At the time she had no idea it would become a book. The Mercy Papers (excerpt) is a gut-wrenching, painfully honest, and deeply moving account of her mother's last three weeks. [more inside]
posted by liketitanic on Mar 5, 2010 - 31 comments

a bookshelf full o' sorrows

Starting with Frank McCourt's "Angela's Ashes" and Dave Pelzer's "A Child Called 'It'" "misery lit" has blossomed into a peculiar genre all its own, one especially popular with the British.
posted by freshwater_pr0n on Aug 12, 2008 - 57 comments

My boyhood, for instance, which no longer exists, exists in time past, which no longer exists.

Who can remember the color of a stranger’s belt, and the precise angle of the back corner of an old movie theater’s lobby, but not the number of his own apartment, or any of the movies he saw? What kind of memory is that?
The Memory Addiction of Augusten Burroughs
Ruthless with Scissors
Augusten's Blog [more inside]
posted by anotherpanacea on May 1, 2008 - 28 comments

Dutch East Indies

Dutch East Indies. "After a wonderful youth in the Dutch East Indies, today Indonesia, my family and I went through three and a half years Japanese occupation. I lost my father, I lost the country I loved, I lost everything, but I kept my memories. ... So here I am, 79 years old, sitting behind my computer, going back to the Dutch East Indies."
posted by No-sword on Aug 16, 2007 - 31 comments

Lord Byron, Seen Through the Eyes of a Friend

The Diary of John Cam Hobhouse. Hobhouse (Wiki) (1786-1869) was a close friend of George Gordon Byron, 6th Baron Byron, and "Hobby-O's" diary contains a vivid account of Hobhouse's friendship and travels with Byron. As editor Peter Cochran writes: "Educated at Westminster and Trinity College Cambridge, [Hobhouse] travelled east with Byron in 1809, was Best Man at Byron’s wedding in 1815, travelled across Switzerland in Byron’s company in 1816 after the separation, around Rome with Byron in 1817, and lived with Byron in Venice in the same year. He met Byron at Pisa again in 1822, after Byron’s facetious poem on his imprisonment in Newgate, My Boy Hobby-O, had almost terminated their friendship. As a member of the London Greek Committee he encouraged Byron on his last journey in 1823; and had he insisted, Byron’s memoirs would almost certainly not have been destroyed in 1824." (Memoirs which, in hindsight, are considered a "missing masterpiece.") Also read Hobhouse's account of Byron's funeral.
posted by jayder on Nov 1, 2006 - 6 comments

MemoryWiki

MemoryWiki is a project to create a bank of memories, stories and experiences. Anyone can submit their account of an historical or personal event. Some examples: First sight of Viet Cong dead | The first time I told a lie | Working with Frank Sinatra | Ukranian Independence Day, 2005.
posted by chrismear on Dec 5, 2005 - 36 comments

The (Publishing) House That Blair Helped Close

"Burning Down My Masters' House" Indeed!
Jayson Blair, noted fraud and liar, is about to be liquidated along with all of the other titles in New Millenium's catalog. The publisher of such quality books as "Nicole Brown Simpson: The Private Diary of a Life Interrupted" by Faye Resnick and "Burning Down My Master's House" by Jayson "Truth? We Don't Need No Stinking Truth" Blair.
Its not known if Blair's memoir had a specific hand in the demise of the publishing house but it couldn't have helped. Selling a whopping 1,386 copies through March 18th.
Is there such a thing as the Anti-Midas Touch? Wherein, everything you touch turns from gold to lead or dust?
Continuing these threads to their karmic conclusion.
posted by fenriq on May 13, 2004 - 13 comments

biographies

A million lives. Links to thousands of biographies, autobiographies, memoirs, diaries, letters, narratives, oral histories and more.
posted by pooligan on Aug 25, 2003 - 3 comments

Fact, Fiction And Memoirs Masquerading As Novels

Is It Fiction If It Says "Fiction" On The Cover? Jorge Luis Borges brilliantly obscured fact and fiction presenting fiction as fact. Things seem to have swung round 180º and fact is now increasingly being sold as fiction. This certainly seems to be the case with Siri Hustvedt's What I Loved. She's Paul Auster's second wife and... Well... now even critics, like The New York Observer's Joe Hagan have joined the fun, as Slate's Katie Roiphe duly noted. Fact is now presented as fiction, without the traditional disguise of the roman à clef. I think it's sad. In fact, it's an attempt on the life of imagination itself. Perhaps these authors who write memoirs masquerading as novels could be sued under the Trade Description Act? [With thanks to the always excellent Literary Salon weblog. Thanks to ColdChef for pointing it out to me.]
posted by MiguelCardoso on Apr 23, 2003 - 28 comments

Literature of fact

'Literature of fact' The high wall which seperates fact and fiction has a small door in it through which people can step. A piece which discusses how someone writing a supposed eyewitness account of an event always tends to fictionalise, even unconciously, in order to make the subject interesting, the idea being that just because a book is in that section, it might not actually be completely non-fiction.
posted by feelinglistless on Nov 16, 2002 - 12 comments

In 1948 Caryl Chessman was awarded two death sentences on two counts of attempted rape. He was probably innocent, yet he was executed in 1960 for more or less "being a smartass." In the years between his sentencing and death, he wrote three memoirs and a novel, which sold well. After the first memoir the prison forbade him to write about anything other than the legalities of his case, so he developed an elaborate code to get his work out to his lawyer. His spirit never broke, as strange as it was. This is his story.
posted by kittyloop on Nov 3, 2001 - 13 comments

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