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Monday, April 18, 2011

Indie Ink Challenge - I'm Famous and I'm Being Sued. Now What?



I had so much fun with the Indie Ink writing challenge last week that I am doing it again this week. If you haven't checked out Indie Ink yet, get over there and see what you are missing. 


My challenge this week comes from Debra Elliot at http://debragrayelliott.blogspot.com/
She gave me a great one to work with:

Challenge: You’re a famous author who has written a
book about your past. Now you're 
being sued. How are you handling the situation?

Here is my take on that challenge prompt. 
(It is a fiction piece but not outside of the realm of possibilities for me at some point...right?) 

I always knew my past would attempt to come back to bite me.  As I stood in the doorway and signed for the certified letter from the courthouse clerk, I had tangible proof that it was indeed happening.

Prior to this, it has just been a series of scathing, threatening e-mails from him. Don’t publish it. If you do, you will regret it. That was always the general sentiment of his rants. He would throw in a few specific threats, usually centered around bodily harm. You know, things like cutting my brakes, hiring someone to kill me, causing me an “unfortunate accident”, all the things you might run across in a good Law and Order marathon. 

I just let him threaten me. I had the truth on my side. That should be enough.

Or so I thought. But apparently the truth isn’t enough to keep him from suing me. I was a little surprised by this approach because although I don’t know a lot about how these things work having never been sued before, I do know that the base of any good lawsuit is the discovery, and the discovery means that all the skeletons in his closet surrounding this particular situation would be coming out and would be put on public record. For a guy that didn’t want anyone to know about his relationship with me, that seemed a little self-defeating for him in my opinion.

This all started when I got published. He was never worried before because I was just a silly little blogger with a modest following of other silly little bloggers and who really cared about that stuff anyways right? He never got why I wrote or why anyone would care what I had to say so he never really worried about my sharing the details of our affair. That is until I got the book deal. And then the screenplay deal. And now the movie deal. Now he cares a little. Go figure.

At the time of our affair, I was the unknown person and he was the one in the spotlight. You see, he is a very important person. People care what he thinks and he cares what people think about him. I was always his dirty little secret. Never meant to see the light of day and never meant to be known. That worked out well for him for a while. And then I decided I deserved better and that was the end of us.

Well, I should say that was the end of our relationship. But our story lived on. On my blog. In the book. And now coming soon to a movie theater near you.  And he is pissed about that. He never imagined that I would have the ability or the talent to ever take the story past the screen on my laptop.  That was always his problem, he never believed in me. He never thought I would be anything more than privileged enough to be allowed to live in his shadow when he chose to share any part of himself with me. I was nothing to him, and nothing without him, at least as far as he was concerned.

But he was wrong. I was always more than he realized I was and I knew my worth. I just let him think he had it all figured out. That was just the role I chose to play for our story and it made for a great one.  I was not surprised that it became a best seller. I am not surprised that it will soon be a hit movie.  I know a good story when I live it. There was never a doubt in my mind.

Which brings me back to where I am today. Standing in the doorway, signing the letter that would serve as my acknowledgement that he was taking me to court for doing nothing more than telling my story. He chose to be a part of it at the time but seems he is not enjoying sharing my spotlight now.  So to him I say, Bring it baby…I’ll see you,  and your skeletons, in court.

Update 4/21/11: I challenged Mandy over at myplaidpants.com with a fun prompt and she killed it! Go check out her challenge response Weight of the World On Her Shoulders here

21 comments:

  1. This is great. Really enjoyed it

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  2. i love the last part...confronting the accuser with truth and conviction.

    Great job, Randy

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  3. WONDERFUL, Randy! I loved it. "I know a good story when I live it." So love that sentence!

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  4. What a cool prompt! I love what you did with it too, my RandyGirl.~

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  5. A very exciting prompt and a riveting response. Well done!

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  6. Bring it, baby! I wish I knew who this person was in your head. A movie star? Some political bigwig (that's who I imagined him to be)? Nice job. :-)

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  7. "I know a good story when I live it." --LOVE, LOVE, LOVE that line! This was quite good RG!

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  8. sigh. i so hope this is my future, too.

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  9. I must agree with the others. "I know a good story when I live it" my favorite line. I love what you did with this, how you went back all the while remaining in the present. Great job!

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  10. I loved that the character was strong, stuck to their guns and did what they did regardless of threats etc ... You captured a lot of feeling without making it totally obvious and there were some stand-out lines in there too.

    Excellent piece!

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  11. Excellent piece about knowing how much worth you have and owning it. You played this part to perfection ;)

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  12. Wow! You did this challenge justice. I wanted to read more...

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  13. yeah, living that good story. love it.

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  14. Wow! Thank you all for such positive, encouraging comments. I so appreciate you taking the time to read my challenge response and thanks to Debra for giving me such a great challenge to work with this week. I am living a good story now, and I'm loving it!

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  15. great job! really loved it :)

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  16. Nice job - I like the way you handled it!

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