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(Auto) biogs about sportsmen, pop stars, celebs etc WTF???


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In reply to an earlier post on 27 Oct 2009 07:17:28 GMT
Christiana says:
I totally agree with you. Look up "My Name is Jakab, Master Jakab" for a really extraordinary life. This man was struck down and crippled with polio at the age of 7, lived in Hungary (his homeland) under the occupation of the germans in WW2 then the brutal Russian regime communists, until his daring excape to the west in 1956. He went on to create his own defence and fitness and not only taught two 'James Bonds' (Sean Connery and Sir Roger Moore) but other famous people too. He has helped form the lives of so many ordinary people from all walks of life for over 5 decades and in my opinion deserves an OBE for all that he's achieved for himself and others. He walks with a pronounced limp but all the trials he went through in his life made him the man he is. Read it and see the difference between his and the biographies of the young footballers of today. No contest!

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Oct 2009 07:17:31 GMT
Christiana says:
I totally agree with you. Look up "My Name is Jakab, Master Jakab" for a really extraordinary life. This man was struck down and crippled with polio at the age of 7, lived in Hungary (his homeland) under the occupation of the germans in WW2 then the brutal Russian regime communists, until his daring excape to the west in 1956. He went on to create his own defence and fitness and not only taught two 'James Bonds' (Sean Connery and Sir Roger Moore) but other famous people too. He has helped form the lives of so many ordinary people from all walks of life for over 5 decades and in my opinion deserves an OBE for all that he's achieved for himself and others. He walks with a pronounced limp but all the trials he went through in his life made him the man he is. Read it and see the difference between his and the biographies of the young footballers of today. No contest!

In reply to an earlier post on 28 Oct 2009 11:10:56 GMT
waterfall says:
I think Hello and the like sell by the van load because there are a lot of brain dead people in this country.

In reply to an earlier post on 28 Oct 2009 12:32:07 GMT
waterfall says:
Good post. Just one observation - psychiatrists don't stitch people up. They talk to people and prescribe loads of drugs. A small item but one that needs addressing. I agree with what you say. Why was one of Knocked out '73 woke up's posts removed? Does anyone know?

In reply to an earlier post on 1 Nov 2009 13:14:23 GMT
Last edited by the author on 3 Nov 2009 06:58:30 GMT
For nugent...

Please don't elevate your personal taste into a measure of value or a moral compass for the instruction of others.

I didn't miss the point at all.
I merely pointed out that celebrity sells and that's their justification for being published.
It was not an endorsement of this state of affairs.
You think people are only justified in publishing if they have a tale of achievement to tell.
Which seemed to me to be arrogantly proscriptive.

Arrogant as in ''look at me aren't I great, I like to read a good biog but not any old rubbish".
Proscriptive as in 'only people who've really achieved something' should be allowed to write or be the subject of books.

By the way, what about 'Cider With Rosie'?
The autobiography of spud faced nipper Laurie Lee, who lead a pretty mundane life
(with a few high points in Spain) and didn't achieve much beyond the writing of this book?
This is indeed a forum about sharing opinions etc but your rejection of what you take to be 'mundane' is mere prejudice.

As we are all making assumptions, I bet you think reading fiction is a waste of time too.

In reply to an earlier post on 1 Nov 2009 13:28:10 GMT
Last edited by the author on 3 Nov 2009 07:18:41 GMT
For Knocked out....
As it happens I went travelling after posting and couldn't be bothered looking at this thread when I did go on Amazon.

I pointed out that celebrities sell and that's their justification for being published.
It was not an endorsement of this state of affairs.
You completely missed the IRONY and didn't get me right at all...think about...
'fake or manufactured maybe, but certainly famous'
That is NOT a tone of unquestioning devotion to the God Fame!

You said..'Yes I have often paused to ponder why 'Hello' sells - thanks for explaining it'.
But I merely posed a question and offered no explanation.
Again you didn't detect any use of irony?
You didn't think that I might actually be saying 'Hello' sells even though it's c**p?

You say that you trained as a doc for 10 years and have spent 15 years in full-time NHS practice as a consultant psychiatrist.
You have confirmed my worst prejudices about bullying NHS doctors and psychiatrists!
God help your patients is all I can say.

Have your years of psychiatry and parenthood taught you nothing more than how to get the wrong end of the stick?
I've experienced your provocative personality and think you were lucky not to have had even worse things than petrol thrown at you.

It seems that your idea of these forums is that grubby bitter little consultant psychiatrists like yourself
are licensed to be OTT at the drop of a hat despite not being able to comprehend what other people are saying.

You are supposed to LISTEN to what people are saying NOT tell them what you think they said and why it's wrong.
Or maybe that is precisely how you deal with your patients and why Jeffrey Masson and I think therapy is a crock of s**t.

Why should I waste time communicating with someone who hides behind a pseudonym and put words into my mouth?
Just so you can RANT about them?

In reply to an earlier post on 1 Nov 2009 13:32:53 GMT
No Collette you're talking a lot of sh!!!t mate.
When I said 'Ever wondered why 'Hello' and the like sell by the van-load? '
I didn't say that was a GOOD thing , did I?
I think you need to think for yourself and not just parrot other people's wrong ideas...
but I doubt very much that I'll lose any sleep over what you've just spouted.

In reply to an earlier post on 1 Nov 2009 13:37:42 GMT
Why the ridiculous pseudonym hypergod?
Why the unquestioning admiration of a cut-price Michael Macintyre?
The masterful assassination was of something entirely created by KO's imagination and has nothing to do with my 'thoughts'.

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Nov 2009 05:56:12 GMT
Last edited by the author on 3 Nov 2009 05:57:26 GMT
mr db
BUT this is the shame/agony of it.....k o 73 got me completely WRONG
so it seems that you will not get the message either.

My post was an attack on arrogance and assumed moral superiority
which has been wrongly interpreted as a defence of the celebrity culture.

Does it not occur to you that your moral superiority over the oiks and riff raff expressed with such vitriol
is at the least snobbish and at the worst fascist?

What do you propose to do to improve the puerile lives of the dullards who increase the workload of the caring professions?

B****r all!.. I suspect.

Why not sterilise anyone with an IQ below 100?
That would improve the race!

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Nov 2009 06:10:52 GMT
Last edited by the author on 3 Nov 2009 06:12:06 GMT
Prana

How sad and naive!
To have got involved with Big Brother in the first place you demonstrated narcissistic qualities of your own.
Did you perhaps expect to demonstrate your superior character to the viewers and therefore win?
None of what happened to you will have come as a surprise to anyone
who has given a moments consideration to the programme.

No matter how you rationalise it you got involved with something designed to make
exhibitionists of its participants and voyeurs of its audience.

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Nov 2009 06:47:33 GMT
Last edited by the author on 3 Nov 2009 06:49:24 GMT
Deadhead
Thanks for taking time out from listening to one of your many box-sets of music by celebrities like Neil Young
who is no slouch at expressing opinions and expecting journalists to write them up.

No medium is value free and you need to be very careful about expressing the moral superiority
of one practitioner over another....Miles Davis over Robbie Williams for example.

We can both admit to falling for the joys of consumerism...
'just one more previously un-released track... please Mr Wyatt'.

And we can agree that it's best to make up your own mind as to what (auto)biographies you wish to read.

Just don't elevate your personal taste into a measure of value or a moral compass for the instruction of others.

PS.I suspect you I cannot remember the last time you read a novel, "original" or otherwise,
so your opinions on modern fiction are not much worth paying attention to, are they?

Posted on 4 Nov 2009 23:27:28 GMT
Blind Lemon says:
Touche! Quite wonderful. I have to admit Mr Whitaker, I also (to my shame) missed the irony in your initial post. But your recent ripostes convince me that initial comment was genuinely ironic. The beauty is, of course, that the two of you, Messrs Whitaker and Knocked Out, almost certainly share very similar views on the celebration of celebrity, though choosing o express them quite differently. Thank goodness you went travelling Mr Whitaker. Had you not done so then you might have exercised your right to reply and set the record straight sooner. Then we would have been denied the twist in the tale upon your brilliant re-entry into the debate.

Can I add two views?

Firstly, a long, successful and full career and life does not necessarily lead to a good autobiography. For my sins I read a lot of golf histories and biographies. Peter Allis has had a longer and more extensive career than most. A successful international professional golfer and Ryder Cup star player who in his time "squared up" against all of The Greats during the the '50s and '60s as the popularity of the sport boomed. A designer of many top class courses and then for many years quite possibly the greatest (if controversial, at times) TV commentator. His should be a a rivetting and revealing story. It is, in fact, unbearably tedious and predictable.

Secondly, there is a view that any book can have a value if it encourages people to read who might not otherwise do so. Personally I would go nowhere near a biog of Rooney, Becks, Jordan or their ilk. But if someone is tempted to do so, and if they might then move on to read an account of 'The Busby Babes', "The Fight", Norman Mailer's story of Ali v Foreman or Bob Dylan's autobiography, "Chronicles", then maybe that first foray has some merit after all.

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Dec 2009 09:26:20 GMT
Just a little bump up so it'll get noticed again.

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Dec 2009 14:52:57 GMT
Last edited by the author on 18 Dec 2009 12:38:09 GMT
hello hope you enjoyed your traveling Mr W.

I clealr missed the irony in your initial post and as you fairly point out, i then went on to rant about a view you clearly do not hold - ironic that I missed your irony completely as that happens to me alot - your slagging off of nhs and docs and so forth is I feel as misplaced and unfair as my comments - so, as I am not without sin i can't really comeback at you - but i am sorry for ranting in the wrong direction at the wrong time - no doubt you are a paragon and beyond any criticism...perhaps, just a thought, but you should write an autobiography yourself ?

Posted on 19 Dec 2009 19:22:24 GMT
Best-selling celebrity memoirs this week

1 Ooh! What a Lovely Pair by Anthony McPartlin & Declan Donnelly (Michael Joseph, £20) Sales this week: 36,318

Seemingly ageless and vexingly perky Geordie TV presenters trace their joint life story from Byker Grove to the Australian jungle in this ghosted memoir critically damned as "affable" and "bland" - and chiefly enlivened by the passage in which Jordan pursues Dec. Although, like the rest of us, she may not have known which was which: she may have been after Ant.

2 My Sh*t Life So Far by Frankie Boyle (HarperCollins, £18.99) 30,700

Bile-filled, foul-mouthed, misanthropic, hilariously unpleasant about anyone who's put their head above the parapet of celebrity - what's not to like? The key problem with Boyle's memoir of his first 37 years is the sense that telling his life story gets in the way of what he'd rather be doing, ie telling rude jokes.

3 Saturday Night Peter by Peter Kay (Century, £20) 26,873

This follow-up to the Bolton standup's bestselling The Sound of Laughter from Christmas 2006 tells the calamitously diluted story of his first years on tour. By the end of the book he's only 30, so we can expect more, though even his most ardent fans might yearn for less.

4 It's Not What You Think by Chris Evans (HarperCollins, £20) 21,709

It certainly isn't: it's a critic-confounding mea culpa of a memoir from Britain's one-time most arrogant DJ. The chastened fortysomething, who takes over Terry Wogan's Radio 2 breakfast slippers next month, reflects on the stranger that is his ego-bloated former self and prepares us for volume two, in which he marries that nice Billie Piper.

In reply to an earlier post on 19 Dec 2009 19:29:31 GMT
Last edited by the author on 19 Dec 2009 19:30:29 GMT
Comedian Frankie Boyle berates publishers for producing 'cr*p' celebrity memoirs. Meanwhile his own is a bestseller

Guardian.co.uk, Saturday 19 December 2009

Comedian Frankie Boyle says it's time for publishers to come up with better ideas for books than celebrity memoirs.

Rebecca Adlington, Kerry Katona, Susan Boyle and the Queen can all breathe sighs of relief. Frankie Boyle (no relation to Susan) has a new target: publishers. The Glaswegian comedian has attacked them for creating a degraded books market teeming with celebrity memoirs - which may seem a bit rich given that he's just written one of his own.

"I never really followed publishing until I wrote this book," said Boyle over coffee in the bar of his posh hotel in Covent Garden, "but what strikes me is there aren't many publishers you'd confuse with leading philosophical thinkers of the day.

"Right now if you read the Bookseller there are publishers moaning about how terrible celebrity biographies now are. How they're all badly written and say nothing. It's a fair point, but don't they realise that they're responsible for creating this toxic gene? They're the ones who have been putting out any old cr*p - and now they're complaining?

"Maybe if they came up with better ideas for books or they told some celebrities who want to write their memoirs to f*ck off now and again, I might have more respect for their argument."

He added: "Don't get me wrong. I'm not saying publishers are all evolutionary blips who deserve to become extinct." And then he trailed off mid-sentence.

This is an intriguing analysis because Boyle has spent more than four months this year writing a book in the toxic sub-genre he indicts. Boyle's My Sh*t Life So Far has sold 107,000 copies in hardback since it was published in October and received overwhelmingly enthusiastic reviews. The book is proving a surprise bestseller at a time when retailers, critics and readers are berating publishers for printing memoirs by celebrities you've never heard of or autobiographies by stars who seem to have published their life stories only five minutes earlier.

Among the most derided offerings this Christmas are Peter Kay's 272-page Saturday Night Peter, which follows his 2006 autobiographical bestseller The Sound of Laughter, and Sheryl Gascoigne's Stronger: My Life Surviving Gazza.

How then does Boyle, the shock jock from BBC2's Mock the Week who sent the Daily Mail and Newsnight into conniptions with his impersonation of the Queen ("My p*ssy is so old that it's haunted"), justify his foray into a genre he despises? "I can't. I was writing a column for the Daily Record [he quit when they declined to publish a piece suggesting that the recently deceased Michael Jackson was a p****phile] and I found it quite easy. I thought if I can write 1,500 words of jokes like that in a day then I could write a book of jokes with my life loosely threaded through them."

When asked about the literary merit of his book, Boyle replied: "I think the most important things my book does is to give readers the address of George Monbiot's website and how to get hold of comic books by Grant Morrison." He said the best celebrity memoir he ever read was Clive James's Unreliable Memoirs. "But that was proper literature. This isn't."

Boyle, 37, conceded the relative youth of those who overwhelmingly write celebrity autobiographies today further undermines the genre's credibility. "A few years ago there was a fuss when Ian Botham's biography came out and people said 'But he's only 12'. Now nearly everybody's ridiculously young when they write their memoirs. It is wrong. I remember reading Paul O'Grady's book and thinking this is proper autobiography, with lots of detail and history. Not that much has happened to me."

Boyle's book begins: "I don't think anyone can have written an autobiography without at some point thinking, 'Why would anyone want to know this sh*t?'" Despite this, the book occasionally veers from telling jokes into passages that describe his upbringing in the Pollokshaws district of Glasgow and detail his alcohol, LSD, sexual and mushroom experiences. "I'm clean now," he said of his lurid past. "I've been stabilised into blank antipathy."

Why is your book a success? "Because I worked hard at the jokes. That's what I do in my stand-up. I work hard and hone the material and after a while audiences expect what I do to be good. And I did the same thing with this book."

Is Boyle utterly cynical about the book he's produced? "I'm not cynical at all." Boyle, who considers himself a devotee of Noam Chomsky's politics, "only more leftwing than that", said that when he started writing a column for the Sun recently, he was buoyed by thoughts of one of the paper's ex-columnists, former London mayor Ken Livingstone. "It's that Marx thing: you make history in conditions not of your own choosing. And the point is not just to write to the converted. It's about getting to the audience that doesn't agree with you rather than preaching to the converted."

Will he write a sequel? "I wouldn't have thought there'll be one. Not after all the disparaging stuff I've said about my publishers."

But, given his first book's success, he may well be wrong.

Posted on 22 Dec 2009 19:59:36 GMT
Last edited by the author on 22 Dec 2009 20:12:32 GMT
Ronnie G says:
OP - I share your frustration about celebs autobiographies. In fact I have started a facebook group about this very topic - my father in law has written a cracking book about his life as a bomber pilot. (Alone I Fly by Bill Bailey - nothing to do with me - he wrote it!) It is his first book to be published - Pen & Sword published it. last month. He was a bomber pilot in WW2 and got through some amazing scrapes including being shot down in the desert. It deserves book space in the shops instead of the likes of Ant & Dec and the many other celebs auto-bs. So the facebook group's goal is to bring to the fore this very subject - lets make room for the ordinary man who has a tale to tell and lived a life (he was 85 when he finished it!) Head over to http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=213111338860&ref=nf#/group.php?v=info&ref=nf&gid=213111338860 the group is called "Alone I Fly to top the book charts" and join up! No need to buy it(though its cracking read!) - its not a quid mp3 download - just lend your support. In the spirit of the FB group that influenced the music charts lets see if we can do it with the book charts!Alone I Fly: A Wellington Pilot's Desert War
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Participants:  23
Total posts:  42
Initial post:  1 Jul 2009
Latest post:  22 Dec 2009

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