Fake Memoirs Causing a Hubbub

Move over James Frey, there are some new fakers in town.

Last week it was discovered that a Holocaust memoir entitled Misha: A Memoire of the Holocaust Years by Misha Defonseca was completely made up.

And now, a gang memoir called Love and Consequences, written by a Margaret B. Jones has been recalled for being, well, a lie as well.

In it, Jones wrote about her life as a half-white, half-Native American girl growing up in South-Central LA as a foster child, mixing in with the wrong crowd, and running drugs.

It turns out, however, that Jones is actually a pseudonym for Margaret Seltzer, who is all white, never lived with a foster family, and has never run drugs for any gangs.

Hmmm. Who do we blame here? First, have the publishers heard of fact-checking? Second, if Seltzer had been smarter, she could have easily passed off her book as fiction. But I guess that wouldn't have worked since all the money in publishing is currently in memoirs and cookbooks, right?

Having a vivid imagination isn't a bad thing but when people are obsessed with "the truth", then marketing something as a memoir can be dangerous, especially since memoirs are often just as fictional and constructed as a novel.

I think I'll stick to poetry, thank you very much. That way I can say anything I please and not have anyone read it at all.

Just kidding.

More on Love and Consequences by Margaret B. Jones, er, I mean Margaret Seltzer or whatever the heck her name is, here.

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