Dear Harper Collins,
I see that you are to pay Amanda Knox £4 million for her memoirs. Apparently she hired a top lawyer used by Barack Obama and George W. Bush to negotiate a book deal about being jailed in Italy for her part in the murder of Meredith Kercher, a British student.
I see that she will reveal ‘never before told details surrounding her case, and describe how she used her inner strength and strong family ties to cope with the most challenging time of her young life.’
I am a jobbing writer who gets paid an often staggeringly low sum for each of my books. If I am found innocent of murdering someone, will you give me a book deal?
Okay, so the prosecution says Miss Kercher was killed in a brutal sex game which went wrong, and Italy’s highest court is appealing over the acquittal. Luckily, Ms Knox won’t be extradited back to Italy from the US so it’s a win-win for you. And as Ms Knox has professed a desire to become a writer, perhaps you can nurture her career with future horrific scandals.
I can offer you other incentives to hire me. For a start, I’m an actual writer so the book won’t need to be dictated and rewritten. Also, I will make sure the details are really gruesome and involve far weirder sex-and-drugs stuff than Amanda’s tale. And I’ll commit the murder in a place where the police are famously corrupt, like Los Angeles.
Furthermore I can cry on cue, thank Jesus and find strength in my family at a moment’s notice. I know there are downsides. I can’t guarantee anyone will call me ‘Foxy’, and I realise that the OJ Simpson book ‘If I Did It’ published by Gibson Square, wasn’t very well received by grumps who felt it was in some way ‘immoral’ to make money from an acquitted but still suspect murderer.
I hope Ms Knox’s book will cover the delightful moment when she did a cartwheel in the police station just after the murder, and the bit where she was caught on television kissing her fellow suspect passionately. I hear he’s also preparing to sell a book about the crime in Italy. Perhaps you could sell them both as a BOGOF.
Anyway, hats off to you for working with Ms Knox’s powerful representatives to create such a unique sales product. I’m looking forward to a book that tells a gripping partial story from a murder case’s key suspect. After all, it’s not as if 21 year-old Meredith Kercher can write one back, is it, having been stabbed so many times and had her throat slit?
Your domestic sales should be good, as I hear Ms Knox is viewed in her own country an innocent victim of a messy Italian judicial system. Unfortunately, over here it is generally assumed that she got away with murder, so you may have to do radio spots as well as posters.
Meanwhile my offer still stands. If we agree the details up-front I can start making immediate arrangements to be involved in a tragic but oddly gripping crime. I’ll visit Ann Summers and B&Q for everything I’ll need today if you like.
The main thing is not to doubt yourselves. Don’t think for a minute that this will make you appear to the rest of the world as a prime example of the moral disease gripping corporate culture.
I look forward to hearing from you soon.