All that glitters

A loyal reader and poster to this blog, and an author herself, has commented a couple times now regarding celebrities and wanna-be celebrities that “All that glitters is not gold.”  She means there are many celebrities and self-proclaimed celebrities who are really not worth anyone’s time.  And she’s right.

My novel is about a celebrity who is definitely worth the time.  She’s been famous, and deservedly so, since she was ten.   She’s won numerous awards, including an Oscar.  She can transform herself so persuasively that in one scene about 2/3 through the book, she disguises herself and assumes the persona of a Russian immigrant while out and about one day and our protagonist, who’s spent a lot of time with her at that point, doesn’t even realize for the longest time that it is her.

As I’m writing this I realize how “old school” it is–a celebrity with real  talent.  Unfortunately, most of today’s names in the news are noted because of the train wrecks they are.  It seems as if the real talents try to keep away from their public.  (See my last blog post relating to this.)  Go to the “Entertainment” pages, and you read about Lindsay melting down, Britney having fits, and all those reality TV celebs who as far as I can’t tell don’t do anything.  Yet people love to read about them, for some reason.

Is this idea even too quaint for today–a genuine celebrity of interest?  Is it too 1990s?  The real talents, it seem, try so hard not to be celebrities, and the paparazzis aren’t even seemingly interested in them.  (Look at the people TMZ calls celebrities…most of them don’t even do anything except get photographed by the likes of TMZ between jail sentences and custody disputes.)

What’s up with celebrity, anyway?  Like so many other things, has the very concept been turned on its head?  Is it perhaps dead?  Are people of real accomplishment too boring for our shock-addicted society?  Or shall this infatuation with the dregs too pass?  I’d like to hear some thoughts!

3 responses

  1. John, you are a writer with substance and I really appreciate that about you. It is my hope that “people of real accomplishment” will someday be appreciated (again?) by society at large. But if they aren’t, at least there are those of us who can recognize “gold” when they see it.

    Love this post! Thanks for the mention! :)


    April 29, 2010 at 11:16 am

  2. Anyone who mentions the name of Alexis Tocqueville in her blog has got to be a friend of mine lol. I invite you to check out my posts, I’ve only been doing this for three weeks. Peace. wjholland.wordpress.com


    June 8, 2010 at 11:24 am

    • Glad you like the reference, and I think AT was one of the greatest geniuses of Western civilization and Americans could learn a lot about themselves and avoid a lot of the same mistakes we’ve already made if we’d read him closely. However, you apparently haven’t read my blog closely. I am not a “she.” :-)


      June 9, 2010 at 2:34 pm

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