Grumpy Old Bookman has written an absolutely masterful blog post. In it, he points out that few memoirs are 100 percent truthful accounts, and that even most novels have autobiographical elements that might get their authors into trouble. The only possible recourse, he argues, is to fabricate everything:
But if you have genuinely taken the trouble to make up everything, and can demonstrate that you have, with notes and so forth, then at least you are likely to steer clear of legal trouble. And, perhaps just as important, your conscience will be clear.
I had a hard time parsing the fact that this was satire at first, because there are so many bloggers out there who would express this same sentiment in complete naive honesty.
Just think how dull the literary world would be if the first priority of every author was simply to avoid legal trouble.
What would literature be, if there was no truth in it?