File Under: Inevitable Lawsuits

August 4th, 2005 · No Comments
by Booksquare

What is a poor writer to do these days? At every turn, someone is complaining about being unfairly depicted. Heck, just last week, we received an email from a writer who received a threatening letter because her character just happened to have the same name as a living, breathing human. It makes us wonder just what the purpose of having a quirky, slightly insane family is.

Now far be it for us to come off as cynical, but we might suggest that when a book portrays one (or many ones) in an unflattering light, granting public interviews isn’t necessarily the best way to hide one’s identity, especially after said identity has been obscured in the book. Also, if emotional distress happens, while the law allows a certain time period to file suit, we think it would be best to stop the bleeding much earlier. That way there will be less stress. Sure, less money, too, but what is money compared to peace of mind.

In the meantime, we will work harder to disguise any and all fictional characters based, however loosely, on real people. For example, if someone named “Jill Monroe” pops up in a story, rest assured that the characters bears no resemblance to any living creature. Even if the character says things like, “You must carry your cell phone with you at all times” or “I insist that you quit your job and pay more attention to me.”

File Under: Books/Mags/Blogs