29 May 2008

On Memoirs & Memoir Writing (re: Scott McClellan)

When writing your memoirs, be sure to keep in mind your two primary goals:

1. And by far the most important--to sell books. (duh)

[check]

2. Exculpate yourself. (also, duh)

[check & check]

Memoirs are supposed to be self-serving, so make sure yours serves you. The bigger the firestorm and more outrageous the allegations, the higher your sales will be. Cha ching, baby. Also, and this is important: take potshots at unpopular figures. It doesn't matter if what you write is true; the only thing that matters is that it confirm what people already believe.

What are you waiting for? Start writing.

Armed with these tips, you're well on your way to climbing the bestseller list, winning new friends (alienating all your old ones), making piles of cash and losing all credibility. (or was that gaining credibility?).


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2 comments:

Ben Treasure said...

First, I'd like to say that nobody pissed me off in the Bush Administration on a superficial level more than Scott McClellan as Bush's mouth piece of deception and fumbled policy moves. The fact that someone of obviously average intelligence would try to be so condescending drove me up a wall, Jake.

Now, with that being said, let me say that I am even more disgusted with this memoir. The Bush Admin got it exactly right when they wrote this off as the ramblings of a "disgruntled employee." I believe that is how they put it anyway. The whole thing stinks of opportunism and clearly a large number of zeros in McClellan's mind.

Personally I think the GOP is struggling for a new message lately, and most of their leaders who still have a future are having to be very careful with their association with the outgoing president. True to form, McClellan has overplayed his hand and assumed most of us were stupid enough to actually buy that he's really just an "honest guy." Sadly, judging by everyone on the left (my side) eating out of McClellan's hand, I suppose he was right to a degree.

When this all blows over, I think McClellan will fail at everything beyond making some money in the initial release of his book. I'm reminded of Benedict Arnold's cold reception in England after thinking he would be welcomed as a hero - although McClellan hardly ever put himself on the line (or had the stones) like Arnold, even in treason.

Basically, I was pleased enough to be done hearing from this impetuous tool when he got canned in '06. Go away already, Scott.

RD said...

Great analysis, both.

When I first heard about this, I thought the obvious: there is big money in this type of thing, especially right now. But Ben's analysis is deeper and probably accurate. This is definitely McClellan's way of salvaging his future. Unfortunately, it was so obviously transparent that Jake, Ben, and I all agree on something.

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