Posted on 08/11/2021 at 09:44 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

Two previously hot memoirs are now causing their publishers some high-profile headaches.

Andrew Cuomo, who resigned as governor of New York yesterday over sexual-harassment allegations, had written what seemed likely to be one of 2020’s it memoirs last summer.

American Crisis: Leadership Lessons From the COVID-19 Pandemic eventually netted a $5 million-plus advance after a bidding war, according to the New York Times.

Now, with both his actual COVID leadership and behavior towards women under scrutiny, that deal was described by one literary agency as “like a publisher’s worst nightmare” to the NY Times.

The paper was unable to confirm with Cuomo’s publisher whether the remainder of his advance — $2 million — will still be paid out in installments over the next two years.

Across the pond, teacher and poet Kate Clanchy is rewriting her memoir, Some Kids I Taught and What They Taught Me, over complaints that some passages are racist and ableist.

The Guardian reports that Clanchy first pushed back against the concerns; as they gained momentum, her publisher first said it was “discussing the best way to update the book for future editions.”

That statement, released Friday, drew more fire for not being strong enough, and by the next week, both Clanchy and her publisher had apologized for their early responses and revealed plans to rewrite the problematic passages.

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Categories: Today in Books

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