When the tell-all memoir of Julian Assange is published tomorrow, it will be against his consent, U.K.-based the Independent reports.
The bitter argument between small Scottish publisher Canongate and the WikiLeaks founder reads almost like a bad novel. Assange agreed to write the autobiography because of mounting legal fees. Canongate gave Assange a fat advance. Assange was promised it would be “part memoir, part manifesto.” Canongate went on to sell the rights to 38 other publishing houses. Famous Scottish novelist Andrew O’Hagan was brought in as ghost writer. Assange posed for pictures and trumpeted the coming memoir.
And then he got the first draft.
Assange immediately said he didn’t want the book published and declared that “all memoir is prostitution.”
The WikiLeaks founder’s biggest complaint was that far too many personal biographical details (sexual abuse allegations, perhaps?) and far too little of a political manifesto was included in the book.
But Assange has not been able to stop the presses — in part because he hasn’t returned his big advance.
Tomorrow, the memoir, “Julian Assange: The Unauthorized Autobiography,” will be released.
The Independent gives a glimpse into what we can expect:
The memoir paints a vivid portrait of a driven but notoriously mercurial idealist bent on moulding the world in his own belief of absolute transparency. It begins with the Australian’s peripatetic childhood in Queensland accompanied by bohemian parents who always made him question authority, describes how he plunged into the hidden underworld of early hacking and went on to form a whistle-blowing platform that would redefine the nature of information security. The book also contains prolonged and bitter rants against some of the media partners he allied WikiLeaks with to publish his largest revelations with particular ire reserved for the New York Times and the Guardian newspapers.
Shocking that Assange didn’t want it published.
On Twitter, a hashtag #assangefirstlines was started to comically speculate on what the first line of Assange’s book would be. Some people played on Assange’s ego:
While others riffed on famous first lines of novels:
And still others used the opportunity to make fun of WikiLeaks:
BlogPost made its own contribution, with inspiration from here: