Q: How is this an “autobiography”? Kim Jong Il didn’t write it! LOL FAIL
A: For the most part, actors don’t write their own lines, singers don’t write their own songs and presidents don’t write their own speeches. Instead, they work together with professional writers to collaborate on a given product.
Take a look at any celebrity “autobiography.” In the acknowledgments, someone will be thanked for their “assistance” or “research” or the like. That person is the co-author of the book. Through interviews and research, they worked closely with the celebrity to hone a message and craft a narrative. And that’s what I do professionally.
There’s a myth that a ghostwriter does such work independently. But the actual process is closer to an attorney and their client, someone who helps a person tell their story honestly, clearly and coherently.
In this case, I didn’t work with Kim Jong Il (hence “unauthorized”). But I read over sixty books and hundreds of articles to get his point of view.
Q: How do you know what he thought?
A: Kim Jong Il’s perspective on everything is incessantly proclaimed throughout north Korea. He even addressed magic tricks and gymnastics! Plus, many members of his inner circle have defected and discussed his personal life.
Q: Is this a joke?
A: If anything, it’s a farce. I played it straight, presenting an autobiography as he would have it written. And since he was born during World War II and died in 2011, his life perfectly matches the history of north Korea as its own country. His life story is the story of a nation.
Q: Have you ever been to north Korea?
A: Sure have! That’s where I got the bulk of my source books.
Q: How do I know what’s true in this book?
A: The same way a person knows what’s true in any other book. ;-)