Ghostwriter as paid friend

By David Murray, Editor, Vital Speeches of the Day

Writer Rich Cohen has written a fine first-person account of being a beleaguered ghostwriter to the late investing kingpin Theodore Fortsman.

The money line in the Vanity Fair piece comes after Fortsman has been berating Cohen for months for having ceased interviewing him and begun writing.

It came to a head and the two had a sit-down: “But he was nice at lunch, even affectionate, and for a moment I felt guilty. I mean, what was he but some lonely old guy who needed a friend?”

And what is a ghostwriter, Cohen implies, but that friend, for hire.

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