I admire people who have enough life for a biography, and wonder about those who have too much ego for an autobiography. However, I think the true way to go is to hire a screenwriter! This is the way to view your life.
Recently I curled up with my Kindle and we shared a best seller which frankly should have been kindling. My jaw dropped even farther, when I watched the movie made from it and what a screenwriter created. Seriously? As grandma said you can’t make a silk purse from a pigs ear and boy they got it wrong on all fronts!
Many years ago I read two books from new authors at the time. One was a “firm” offering, with great plot, character development and action around every corner. The other, a “shining” example of nightmares at their best, with characters I still see in dark shadows and original concepts that were just darn perfect! When I heard they were headed for “the big screen” you can bet my hot buttered attention I was there and I waited with baited gummy bears to get my ticket. Sadly, they both had been made into works of fiction far different from what the authors had planned; with so many drastic changes to the plot one of the two writers actually had his name removed from the credits! That was my only applauding moment.
Ironically, there are many people in my life who are also screenwriters and they don’t even know it. They rewrite life’s history on a daily basis and do it so well; they actually believe what they have produced. I guess if it works so well in the movies why not slide it over into life and avoid all those messy details you might have to explain to your children someday. For me though, I would like to think when I have passed from this stage and gone into my eternal production I will leave behind some great plot development, touching characters and even a few light hearted comedy skits remembering me well. That will be biography enough for those I loved, and maybe in time they will recognize similar instances in their own life and smile.
But with the internet and all the average screenwriters deleting moments, changing themes and making moments completely disappear, who really leaves anything behind anymore? At least anything true to the original and worth holding on to – even photographs are now altered from location to appearance. I could actually leave a “lasting” image for my great grandchildren showing me with no wrinkles, no gray hair at 90, standing in front of the Eiffel Tower with a bouquet of roses and a small cat. Only problem with that is I earned those wrinkles and gray hair, it made me into the mother and grandmother they knew, I’ve never been to Paris (yet anyway) and I hate cats and roses. Guess I will need a stand in.
Somewhere in all the technology we love there has to be a stage left where the screenwriters can quietly exit and reality can resume the role. I don’t want the sphinx in Egypt to have a nose job, I like wondering about the magic bullet or why Marilyn Monroe took a long nap. But most of all I like knowing that someday the details that hurt or embarrassed me in life, might shed light on who I was to those I loved and might even help them in a similar situation. That will be my biography and I will gladly autograph it with all my heart.