Question: If you wanted to write a book that, because of the subject matter, was guaranteed to be published and even to be a best-seller if it were salacious enough, but you were too lazy or irresponsible or agenda-driven to check facts and determine the reliability of every story, what would you do to just let yourself off the hook for that?
Easy! You’d simply write an introduction saying it was impossible to verify what you’d written and leaving it up to the reader to come to his or her own conclusions. Wow, would that save you a ton of work! You wouldn’t even need to hire any researchers, which means you’d get to keep more of that hard-earned (not) advance. Best of all, you wouldn’t have to take out any of the really negative stories that might not pan out but that you know would get you the most press, especially if you released a tantalizing excerpt before the official publication date. The book could essentially include anything you wanted to say. And, hey, if something turned out to be less than accurate or even a big fat lie, it wouldn’t be your fault. It would be the reader’s fault for believing it.
Think of it! You wouldn’t have to edit anything out, no matter how ridiculous. And the crazier it was, the higher your sales figures would be.
That is exactly what author Michael Wolff did in his prologue for his new book “FIRE AND FURY: Inside the Trump White House.” Here’s just one example of the weaseling: “Many of the accounts of what happened in the Trump White House are in conflict with one another; many, in Trumpian fashion, are baldly untrue. These conflicts, and that looseness with the truth, if not with reality itself, are an elemental thread of the book.”
In other words, since he’s decided that facts don’t matter in Trump World, he doesn’t have to let them matter to him, either. Why, he can print absolutely anything he wants. And, apparently, he did.
This book doesn’t merit the attention it’s getting, so I won’t have much more to say about it. It should be in the remainder bins soon. Just thought you’d like to know how this author got himself out of verifying what he wrote, in case you ever want to write a salacious bestseller without accepting any responsibility for what’s in it.