James Frey & James Frey

Never trust a Junky.

To hear that Frey admits the Smoking Gun article to be an accurate description of the book’s falsities is a real disappointment.  To read that the guy made up not only a good portion of the book before and after treatment, but certain facts during his recovery at Hazelden leaves me with way too many questions.

If ALL of the points made by TSG are accurate, then what about the rest of the book?  What about all of the facts that cannot be proved accurate or inaccurate, either way?  

One thing I’d definitely like to point out is that this book is NOT about that magic word, ‘Recovery’.  First off, ‘Recovery’ is a bullshit word made up by the AA/NA franchise to label those who are actively participating in their marketed 12-step programs.   Frey’s book has nothing to do with recovery by this definition and in fact preaches against it.   The message from this book is to go it alone and that addiction is a weakness; an excellent message that I’m certainly willing to promote granted that it be true.  Oops.

I do feel bad for James.  I won’t deny that.  As someone writing a book about themselves and at the same time finding that their life isn’t all as exciting as they’d cracked it up to be (Hey!  You should write a book someday!) and then choosing to embellish it; I can relate.  I hit that sore spot every time I sit down to write a blog entry, I just choose not to make shit up in order to compensate for it.  Patting Frey on the pack for his work is to stomp and kick the forty writers we have here at JL who work hard to speak and share the facts of their daily lives (hey, where’s our Oprah time?)

Either way, the worse it gets, the more money that comes rolling in.  What’s that AA cliché?  You can’t save your ass and your face at the same time?  What about selling your face despite your ass? 

I know that Frey’s intentions were not to have his book blow-up into this huge best-seller and I’m sure  that he’s just a regular guy who got caught up in it all and is now more or less just a pawn being kicked back and forth between media and publisher.  As a person, I feel sorry for him, but where’s my million bucks for writing the Junky truth? 

Any old sorry Junky can write a book of lies; it’s what we do.  (And I’m happy to; just show me the money.)

11 thoughts on “James Frey & James Frey

  1. Man you always seem to come up with interesting stuff. Sounds like this bastard got rich of a bunch of bullshit huh? If only we could all be so fucking lucky haha. Hope things are going well, and let me know if you ever end up with some time for the xbox thing.

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  2. I do agree, and was thinking about this yesterday… he tried several times to publish as a fiction story, but no one would do it. I read that he got something like $10k advance (is this true?) to sell it as a non-fiction… Now, junky or no, he is HUMAN!

    Secondly where were/are all these truth-mongers in the media when our gov leadership lied and lied? Didn’t see any grillings, and fucking Oprah on TV calling them on their shit!

    But anyone can make up stories… by the way, I believe his book was so addictive b/c of ‘style’ (after all it was predictable and wasn’t very ‘heady’) and truth has no bearing on that…

    But it does give those of us who want the truth to be known (and not to be thought of as full of shit) a bad name… there, I’m done.
    -H

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  3. I find myself staring at the screen often trying to decide what to write. I mean my life is so routine and boring so I understand completely. But is one is writing thing that did not happen it seems to me the writer holds responsibility to say this is embellished or fiction period.

    BTW, I always enjoy your blog and you have very interesting takes on the mundane, one of my favorites was the post about the cold sore. YAY Bi11i!

    How are you feeling?

    KEL

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  4. Hey,

    I guess he thought he had to spice things up a bit to make it more interesting. The sad thing is that the more controversy there is, the more likely people will buy the book to find out for themselves. I, too, feel like I have some sort of novel inside. The only thing is that I would never publish it because if I told the whole truth it would devastate certain people that I love. Maybe oneday when they have passed on, I’ll see if Oprah wants to tout my book…LOL

    Peace…BaltimoreSusan

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  5. I’m still diappointed with this James Frey thing. I give him credit for the scam of the decade but for those of us who have REALLY lived the shit, are trying to claw and climb out of it, he’s a miserable joke.
    Hope your well there buddy. Just drinking my espresso and I stopped by to say hello.

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  6. Don’t you know I feel like a complete fool! I mean, I jumped on the soap box via JL and fired off a couple of hundred words in Frey’s defense and charging the media of tearing down someone who’s sole purpose in writing the book was to help others like us who struggle with addiction in their lives. Now as more and more comes out about the amount of embellishment that really is in his “memoirs”, I’m glad I didn’t buy a copy and thereby contibute to the scam. I really wanted to believe he was the person he appeared to be on Oprah’s first show with him and didn’t off my rose colored sunglasses and consequently didn’t see the light.

    HoM struck on one of my pet peeves also….just why isn’t the media putting our so called government leaders feet to the fire over the lies and scams they’ve pulled since 9/11 under the quise of fighting terrorism when in fact they’re just being the greedy capitalists they are and are trying to steal a countries natuaral resources, get huge government contracts without having to face competition from other companies and make sure the military industrial complex continues to thrive in spite of the fact that there is no longer any other evil empire but us!

    I guess my jealousy is showing through isn’t it?

    Peace,

    Hack

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  7. Speaking of “Recovery” and 12 steppers, I’m shocked that the outrage about the book is directed only at the lies and embellishments he told and not his total shunning of 12 step programs in general. Every AA/NA person I’ve ever encountered is so convinced that it is “the only way”, which is the main reason I have not become one of those people. James Frey (assuming he is not lying about not relapsing) has apparently found another way. I’m surprised and slightly disappointed that the “Recovery” community isn’t completely pissed off, or if they are they’re keeping awfully quiet about it.

    J

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  8. HofMadness Quote:

    “Secondly where were/are all these truth-mongers in the media when our gov leadership lied and lied? Didn’t see any grillings, and fucking Oprah on TV calling them on their shit!

    But anyone can make up stories… by the way, I believe his book was so addictive b/c of ’style’ (after all it was predictable and wasn’t very ‘heady’) and truth has no bearing on that…

    End Quote>

    Yea that up above..agreed.

    As well what bugs me just a little is some people read this kind of stuff for a heads up on how to do better for themselves..it’s like a testament that says if I can..hey then you can. So I give Frey a bricket for BS’ing the truth and a bouquet for coming clean. Not much else he could do really…small slap James.

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  9. How’s this for weird-I usually use mozilla firefox,when I do your heading is the pic of a pile of apricot coloured pills.I just logged on just using internet explorer and there’s the gruesome teeth!?!
    Huh?No kidding,I’ve got both windows open and can switch from pills to teeth-I’ll stick with the pills I think,How do you explain that?No,I’m not tripping.

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  10. Hey bud, Couldn’t agree more with you on every point. Addiction is a weakness but it’s so much more than that, your comment section couldn’t contain it nor even a book. It’s three things, enviroment, predisposition and sociocultural just for beginners.But I believe a lot of us addicts are extremists, we live on the edge, at least I did.This June it’ll be 8 years since I banged a bag of dope but it calls my name everyday, every single f’n day.I’m not exaggerating, I’m not embellishing, I’m telling the honest to God’s truth. But going to prison after a life of crime and drugs, remind me that I am the extremist and will do whatever it takes to provide for my high. That is not a cure,going to prison, it is a choice I have to make everyday.Do I or Don’t I want to go back to prison? I’ve been off parole since last November. Off course it’s tempting cause who’d know now? But each day it calls me, in my head I gotta yell,”Fuck You.” That’s how I do it, every day.

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  11. bi11i-
    i haven’t heard anything on this Frey guy but ya i think if your going to write about yourself to the public there will always be those few who really know ,so why lie? hey ,i get a publishing deal and they want me to embelish,easy call it fiction and a story not your life.as far as this site goes i think it is rad and give you many kudos and thanks for answering questions and well just doindg this. it is brave and i think more people need to herar our stories for our sake and theirs.
    thanks again,
    punkstfari

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