Saturday, January 24, 2009

Writing the Story

Everybody leveling out after the high of the Obama inauguration? Was anyone actually in D.C. for the events? I’m not sure it would be possible to write the excitement of being there and have it come across so vividly as it would have been in person.

But if you were going to write a fictional account of the last four or five years in a Barack Obama character, could you? Do you think you could write a character like him and make it believable? What tidbits of back story would you sneak in so the election to the presidency is believable? Would you tell the story in third person or first? How would the story be different if you told it from the perspective of the wife instead of the man running for office? At what point would the book end? With the dance with his wife at one of the inaugural balls? A year into the presidency?

And what genre would your book be?

Tell us your ideas and thoughts about such a book.


  1. Remembering clearly my first doubts about his chances I think I can see some interesting angles in such a story. I would consider writing it from the viewpoint of a wife or aide in order to incorporate those doubts more fluidly into the narrative.

    The trouble is to make such an amazing rise to power look believable. I would also need to do plenty of research to get the character of the man right, even if it was a fictionalized version with names changed.

  2. Good lord, Helen, not asking MUCH today are we? Ahm, I'd write the book about Michelle. Not because she's as interesting as Barack in terms of a miracle story, but because she's the HOTTEST babe First Lady we've had since Jackie! Get the right cover picture and you'd sell 5 million copies on the day of release.

    Sorry, since I'm in too much haste to compose a thoughtful answer to your questionssssssss - I thought I'd at least interject a little humor.

    Gotta jet - toodles.

  3. Wyatt, I could even see a children's book being written from one of the girls' points of view of their dad. It is sometimes easier to take an outside POV.

  4. Marvin, you are so funny. Incidentally, do you think you could get inside Michelle's head and portray her? There's a chance, donchaknow, that she views herself as something other than a babe.

  5. Great ideas here, and interesting precept, Helen--I think I'd focus on Hawaii as almost a character in a book about Obama--simply because I could do a lot of "research" in Hawaii for the book.

  6. I'd probably write it from Michelle's viewpoint. I read Connie Schultz's book "And His Lovely Wife" about her marriage to Sherrod Brown and his run for the Senate. I think it struck the perfect balance of reporting events and yet being close to the subject matter.

  7. Conda -- Tax write off! You are one savvy cookie. You could include a trip to Kenya.

  8. I haven't read Schultz's book, Gayle. I bet it was good.

    This is in no way related to any future Obama family book .... I'm now reading Jeannette Walls' memoir, The Glass Castle. So far, it is very good.

  9. I guess it would have to be a political thriller - which means I definitley would not be writing it!
    Perhaps for research as far as the feelings surrounding his election and inagauration, I'd check John F. Kennedy info and those who remembered the times... (Heard a lot of older people comparing the two...)

    L. Diane Wolfe

  10. I actually met Connie Schultz at an Erma Bombeck Writer's Workshop and she signed my copy of her book. Her inscription said, "Gayle, Write, Write, Write. The world needs your voice."

    So cool!

  11. Ooh, a thriller, Diane. All kinds of possibilities with that!

  12. "Gayle, Write, Write, Write. The world needs your voice."
    What a wonderful inscription, Gayle. Gives me shivers.


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