The press release had more than a touch of triumph. Penguin Random House announced it will publish Bono’s memoir Surrender – and let’s face it, the book launch is set to be one of the big publishing events of the year.
And Bono’s side of the story is loaded with bells and whistles. The U2 frontman announced the book’s release with the release of 40 original drawings and an animated video narrated by the man himself. By the time the book comes out in November, there’s a very good chance the public will have embraced it Give up hype.
Bono, who has lived a less ordinary life than your average 62-year-old Northsider, will have plenty to write about. This book has long been a curiosity and will likely do serious business regardless of whether its songwriting nous translates to the written page.
While no financial details of the book deal have been released, it’s safe to assume Bono joins a long list of famous celebs who have signed significant deals to write about themselves. The Obamas famously received $65 million for their 2017 memoir. Will and A promised land; Britney Spears’ untitled memoir, set for release later this year, has been signed for an estimated $15 million.
For the average writer, these numbers are almost unfathomable. Corresponding SalaryExplorer.com, creative writers earn around €26,000 a year in Ireland. It doesn’t take great leaps to wonder how many writing careers might be bolstered, and what kind of contribution to literature might be made, with the kind of stunning advances from those whose contracts are offered on the basis of high profile.
Massive advances in books also mean publishers tend to lean their marketing weight into these titles to recoup their investment. If you’re an author familiar with the muck and the vagaries of pitching, it must be a little annoying to see how high-profile celebrities seem to be wanting a book deal, and to see the book being readied for publication not long after.
According to a report in the Guardian Newspapers, comedians and YouTubers have rushed into the market in recent years, some signing six-figure deals, while professional writers’ advances have plummeted to three- and four-figure figures.
The dominance of celebrity titles in the book market should ideally be a good thing for all involved: all boats get on, room for all, and so on. But the sheer number of celebrity books — some of which serve only to promote the star’s personal brand and not much more — means that in reality, authors are not just competing for book advances and marketing money, but also for shelf space.
And yet the fact remains: the book business is first and foremost a business. The forecasting business in the creative industries is known to be risk-averse. In the confrontation between a newcomer who’s an untried entity who may or may not succeed, and a superstar with a following in the millions, it doesn’t take a Pulitzer winner to figure out who a publisher might be betting its chips on.
Time will tell if Bono’s memoirs will be a masterclass in navel-gazing.
But to (it says here) “fearless,” “honest,” and “intimate” look inside the head of someone that absolutely everyone on this island has an opinion on, one way or another — it takes an iron will, it not to have your head spinning at the same time.
The trial of Wagatha Christie is dingy theater
If you thought “racy” took on a whole new meaning in the Johnny Depp v. Amber Heard defamation trial, you haven’t seen anything. The Wagatha Christie trial, in which Rebekah Vardy accuses fellow WAG colleague Coleen Rooney of defaming her in the High Court, is tickling on the next level.
Rebekah Vardy has already been forced to repeat an unsavory episode in which she described ex-lover Peter Andre’s manhood as “miniature chipolata.” It was recently revealed in court that Vardy allowed her agent to spread stories, including one about a well-known female celebrity “fucking” a soccer player behind his wife’s back. It could get even worse then. Of course, much like Heard v Depp, celebrity fans have enjoyed this unprecedented exposure to famous lives. The only reasonable question is: Why is Rebekah Vardy willing to scream and churn out so many salacious details to “clear” her name as leaking false stories about another woman?
Neither party is likely to cover itself in glory by the end of this process, to say the least. The case, which goes to trial in the High Court, is also expected to cost both women, who have refused to settle out of court, a lot. The only winners here seem to be those who enjoy this dingy, tit-for-tat theatre. Oh, and the lawyers, of course.
Stop Britney’s nude shaming
The reaction to a post-conservative Britney Spears posting nude pictures of herself on Instagram has prompted an odd reaction. When Emily Ratajkowski or Kim Kardashian do it, they are empowered; if Britney does the same, it’s a different story. “This girl she’s sick she’s screaming for help,” one fan wrote under the Instagram post, while another said, “I’m pretty sure the conservatory was there for a reason.” Radical thought — maybe is it just a naked body and a woman expressing her sexuality and nothing more? Maybe let’s get rid of nude shaming?
https://www.independent.ie/life/bonos-memoir-it-may-be-yet-another-celeb-book-but-whose-head-wouldnt-be-turned-by-a-look-inside-the-stars-life-41640924.html Bono’s memoir: It may be another celebrity book, but who wouldn’t have a peek into the star’s life?