I’ve read Fife’s entire manuscript. The new lit fic one. It’s fairly short (especially compared to his historic fiction), but also, I couldn’t put it down. One, because the editor is right and it’s the best piece of writing he’s ever done. Two, because he’s bloody made me the protagonist, and his book is about our relationship.
That’s right. He’s written about our relationship. Fucker.
Okay he changed a few things, like he’s set it in Edinburgh and made me an art dealer. (Did he give Posh the idea to be an art dealer, or is this a coincidence? Do I actually care if Posh did give him the idea? I guess not.) But, he’s made the protagonist my age, she looks like me and she’s from Surrey. He’s kept himself roughly the same, except he’s an artist and she’s manages him. But the male character is older, has a wife (who he’s painted as some sort of maniacal ruthless hagg), and he has one single teenage daughter. The teenage daughter is the side plot, and she gets into all sorts of trouble. In the beginning the teenage daughter and the protagonist are at odds, but in the end the teenager comes to see the protagonist as a mother, especially as her own mother is so horrible.
Reading it was so strange. It’s in first person, and it is the story of our relationship. Except, it’s from my point of view (or the female point of view) and he writes her as an unreliable narrator. So she says one thing to the reader, but does something else. But what I find most disturbing is that it’s what he wanted me to be thinking. Like some sort of fantasy fiction.
For example, he has rewritten the first time he and I ever had sex as the first time the two characters have sex. Exact same scenario. But, he makes me out to be some sort of deductress who lures him to his cottage and seduces him. Also, in his novel, the male character decides that it is the protagonist’s fault that his marriage is braking up, so there’s a big row, but eventually the male character realises that the girlfriend/protagonist has rescued him from a crazy wife. (Wow, it’s really hard writing about this without using character names.) And you know what really pisses me off most about this? He does it with out switching point of view. You know what the male character is thinking through his actions as witnessed by the protagonist – damn that’s good writing.
I am so angry. The book is so well written, and it’ll end up being some sort of best selling, prize winning, fucking book club book. And the industry is so small, everyone will know it’s based on Fife and I’s relationship, but everyone will think that it’s true, and no one will know what a total sociopathic lying scumbag freak Fife is. Oh, and everyone will think that I’m some sort of seductress who learned the errors of her whorish ways in the end, and settled down and had a family like a good little woman. (Blech!)
Oh, and you know what else is in the book? The male character can’t have children because there is a backstory that after his daughter was born, he found a lump in his testicle and now he only has one ball. (Unfortunately, there is no reference to Hitler or the Albert Hall, and I think he missed a trick for not putting it in.) But in the end, during that big climactic fight, you think the two are going to split up, but then she finds out that she’s pregnant, and they all come together as a big happy family as they await the birth of their beloved child. (Blech!) Oh, and the wife’s dead. God, when I type it out, the plot is shit, but the writing is so good you don’t notice how shit the plot is. Fuck, I hate that this book is good.
It’s getting really late. I’ve been in the old man pub reading all day, and I’ve even had a late pub lunch. I need to get back to the flat. Now, I’m hoping Fife is there because I’m going to rip him a new one for writing out our relationship.
How fucking dare he write about us? How dare he put that out there for everyone to see, and think it’s true. And not even tell me about it. I’m going to fucking kill him.