This doesn't really relate to my writing a book, except perhaps to show how quickly our own perceptions become something very solid very quick.
I'm waiting for my next Robert Jordan book to come in, and I picked up a book I hadn't read yet that I'd bought at a thrift store a few weeks ago. I'd heard of it somewhere, but I couldn't really place it. It came out when I was pretty busy getting my own life in order with a new baby and little things like that, so I wasn't super aware of what was going on with pop culture in the outside world. I knew that it had been a big deal though, so I figured it would be worth a try.
That book is A Million Little Pieces by James Frey. Perhaps you've heard of it too?
Yeah, well, just in case you were living under the same rock I was, he's the author who "duped Oprah". She actually said to him on her show that she "felt duped." Me too.
He published his book as nonfiction, and there's controversy about how many liberties he took in his "memoir" about addiction, and entering a program, and successfully beating those addictions.
I wasn't aware of any of this when I started reading it last night. After the first two pages, I was pretty sure it was going to go on my very long list of great books that I love and will recommend.
I read to page 73 before I went to sleep last night. This morning I picked it up and started telling my husband about what I was reading. He actually listened longed enough to hear me mention the title, and that's when he popped my glorious little bubble by telling me about controversy surrounding it.
Yeah, no wonder I remembered hearing about it. (*sigh*)
I looked online and looked up information on it, and now I'm kind of upset my husband chose this book of all books to pay attention to when I talked about it. I was so into it, it was so great! And I thought it was true, really his journey to Hell and back.
But now I'm not so sure. If I'd started it knowing it was fiction, I don't think I'd have any problems. But as it is, I don't even know if I'm going to read it anymore. Which is really sad. It feels like waking up on Christmas morning, being surrounded by presents, and then being told Santa is a big, fat, lie. It really just takes the enjoyment out completely. For me at least.
Maybe I will finish reading it some day, and I know the story is amazing, whether it's fiction or not. It is still the kind of story that pulls me in, and I know I'll enjoy it. But I feel robbed of the...innocence, I guess is the word...that comes from opening a book, taking in the story, and forming an opinion. I feel like if I read it now, I wouldn't really take in the story, I'd just read it while wondering on a deeper level, "Did this happen? Was this real?", and that really takes the magic out for me.
Ugh, what a drag. That's exactly how I feel now...draggy. I need to find another book to read while I'm waiting, one that I can lose myself in and forget my disappointment. Any suggestions?