This week, literary authorities were stunned to uncover the existence of something called memoir, the apparent transmission of one human being’s actual past experience via the printed word and sometimes even bound artifacts known as books. Startling, isn’t it? Normally we think of books as a bunch of made-up bullshit!
Even more astoundingly, memoir turns out to be exceedingly popular, generating big advances, TV appearances and franchisable authors. Which may help to explain why so many young writers are flocking to the study of this bizarre craft. It’s almost as though they want to be commercially successful in their chosen field. Strange days, indeed.
But the news just gets more fantastic from there. It turns out that memoir has existed for literally at least forty years, and probably longer! Scientists have carbon-dated certain miserable memoirs by bearded alcoholics all the way back to the late 1960s. Historians have suggested these ancestors of the modern memoirist were fairly superstitious, often typing with dick in hand.
What other secrets might the world of letters reveal to us in time? Now that we know ourselves capable of reconstructing a workable narrative of what has happened to us up to that point, anything is possible. Why, there might even be such a thing as an autobiographical novel. Imagine!
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