Dear Mom and Dad,
Well, I'm writing with some good news! I have finally figured out what I want to be when I grow up. I know, I know, it took me awhile. But here I am, about to turn 41, and I finally know what I want to be: a writer. More specifically, a published memoir author.
I have noticed, on the NPR interview circuit, that all of today's most interesting books are memoirs, so I am going to write one.
This is where you come in. See, I have noticed that most of these memoir author people have some pretty intense family stuff to write about, wacky parents and bumpy childhoods, drugs, alcohol, mental disorders, etc. So I need you to give me a list of all the stuff you've kept from me over the years, all the really sordid details of our family's lore. Feel free to embellish.
Perhaps you could use some "prompts" or ideas. Think of these categories: Violence...substance abuse...craziness...scandals...shameful events...big family secrets, etc.
Mary Karr, for example, wrote about the night her mother threatened to kill her and her sister with a butcher knife. Now that stuff makes for some good memoir, don't you think? I'm looking for a real attention grabber like that, something Terry Gross can delve into when I am a guest of Fresh Air after my book comes out.
I am hoping to really make it big with this book -- and maybe several sequels -- so I encourage you to think hard about what you can dredge up from the past for me to use.
I am so happy to have finally discovered my true calling. I am going to work hard to make you proud while also portraying you in such a way that I will sell lots of books. It will be a fine line to walk, so I'd just like you to know that whatever I write, I write with purpose. I will not use something just for its sensational value; I will only use what will get me published, I promise.
Hope you are well.
ps. Until I get that big advance towards my book, can you send me some cash? I'd really appreciate it.
* * *
05 November 2009
Book Circuit, Here I Come
Dear Mom and Dad,