When you think nobody's watching...
In the wake of Frey-gate, JT Leroy's shenanigans and as articles like this suggest, I must ask the question: Do writers really believe no one is watching, checking up on or paying attention to their work? Or do they figure they'll ride on the hype, the scandal and the fury of the masses to their great literary career in hell? I just don't get it.
It's one thing to have "your side" of the story; I'm all for "he said/she said," but as Jayson Blair and Stephen Glass most recently proved, making stuff up in the public sphere creates irate bosses, friends and general public, and leads to job loss, reclaiming of advances and the need for a shield to block gobs of spittle spat from the mouths of angry mobs when going out in public. It also just makes you look bad, even stupid, or in the worst case--crazy!
Is it worth all that? Am I just too staid a writer, too straight and narrow to engage in this kind of tomfoolery? Not living enough for my art, not taking enough foolish chances?? Actually, come to think of it, I do write outlandish tales and fabricate to my heart's content. It's called Fiction.
In other intellectual lines of thought--why do I persist at eating at my desk when I ALWAYS end up flinging food? I ask you!