Tuesday October 27th, 2009

Guild and Other Ghosts

ecstasy-and-me-hedy-lamarrWith Halloween looming, AbeBooks cleverly puts together a list of 10 ghostwritten titles. It includes Sinclair Lewis writing the memoir of a tennis player.

The most entertaining summary is of Hedy Lamarr’s Ecstasy and Me: My Life as a Woman, ghostwritten by Leo Guild: “[Guild's] artistic liberties caused Lamarr to sue her publisher over inaccuracies in her own autobiography.”

A couple of years ago, Paul Collins wrote a piece marking the 10th anniversary of Guild’s death, in which he called him “quite simply, the greatest hack ever.” He worked for Bob Hope, wrote a book called The Werewolf vs. Vampire Woman, and another called Street of Ho’s:

Set on Times Square’s notorious “Minnesota Strip,” Street of Ho’s reads like . . . well, like Bob Hope’s assistant writing a novel about hookers. Representative sentence: “Sheila made him a ham and cheese sandwich and they made love while he ate.”