Thanks to the miracles of modern science (i.e. the internet) the 26-page essay I published as an epilogue to the 1989 edition of Fatal Vision, in response to Janet Malcolm’s wrongheaded and factually inaccurate New Yorker attack on my journalistic ethics and me, (later published as a book titled The Journalist and The Murderer) is now available online.
And guess where?
Right here. On this very site where you already are.
As I say in the introduction to the epilogue–I know it’s weird to have an “introduction” to an “epilogue,” but what can I do?–
In 1989, the New Yorker published a two-part article by Janet Malcolm entitled “The Journalist and the Murderer.” In the article, which was published in book form a year later, Malcolm offered her skewed perception of my relationship with Jeffrey MacDonald–the subject of my 1983 book, Fatal Vision–to support her bizarre hypothesis that “Every journalist…knows that what he does is morally indefensible.” So numerous and egregious were Malcolm’s omissions, distortions and outright misstatements of fact that I felt compelled to set the record straight in an epilogue to the updated edition of Fatal Vision that was published in 1989. There is no statute of limitations on truth. Even now, twenty-two years later, Malcolm’s fictions ought not to be accepted uncritically.
What makes this relevant to THE ROGUE is that Jeffrey MacDonald was the first pathologically narcissistic psychopath about whom I ever wrote a book.
Guess who’s the second?