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Damn You, Dominick Dunne

This is going to be another Wuss-out Wednesday post. I did spend some time on breaks at work writing. I have two blog posts started but can’t seem to finish them. I never have been good at making myself write. Or do anything else for that matter.

I might have been able to finish one of the posts to my satisfaction but for one circumstance. I inadvisedly picked up a book I purchased some time ago but had not read yet. People Like Us by Dominick Dunne. I ADORE Dominick Dunne, may he rest in peace. Oh, what a writer he is. His fiction is so layered and satisfying. His people don’t sound like ones I spend much time with, but they feel so real. I’m not reading a book; I’m spending time in another world.

I could wish it was a happier world. I’m sitting here feeling quite upset that this character’s husband is leaving her (not for any good reason) and that character is dying of AIDS (in the early days of the AIDS epidemic, when it was little understood and always a death sentence, and being gay was considered by many to be a dreadful shame). And don’t even get me started on the writer’s story, which echoes Dominick Dunne’s own tragic experience.

Most of Dunne’s novels are considered roman a clefs. That is, they are thinly disguised versions of actual happenings. The Two Mrs. Grenvilles was based on the true story of Billy and Anne Woodward, a society boy who married a showgirl who later shot him. I’m not sure what People Like Us is based on, if anything. But it’s a good, good, good read. I’m going to go back and keep reading it.

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