Related to: 'The Secret Life of Husbands'

Constable

Telling Tales

Melissa Katsoulis
Authors:
Melissa Katsoulis

When Dionysus the Renegade faked a Sophocles text in 400BC (cunningly inserting the acrostic 'Heraclides is ignorant of letters') to humiliate an academic rival, he paved the way for two millennia of increasingly outlandish literary hoaxers. The path from his mischievous stunt to more serious tricksters like the controversial memoirist and Oprah-duper James Frey, takes in every sort of writer: from the religious zealot to the bored student, via the vengeful academic and the out-and-out joker.But whether hoaxing for fame, money, politics or simple amusement, each perpetrator represents something unique about why we write. Their stories speak volumes about how reading, writing and publishing have grown out of the fine and private places of the past into big-business, TV-book-club-led mass-marketplaces which, some would say, are ripe for the ripping.For the first time, the complete history of this fascinating sub-genre of world literature is revealed. Suitable for bookworms of all ages and persuasions, this is true crime for people who don't like true crime, and literary history for the historically illiterate. A treat to read right through or to dip into, it will make you think twice next time you slip between the covers of an author you don't know...

Adam Ellis

Adam Ellis is a 29-year-old artist and blogger and works as an illustrator at BuzzFeed. His first book, Books of Adam: The Blunder Years, was published in 2013. Originally from Montana, Adam now lives in New York City with his two cats, Maxwell and Pepper.

Alison Baverstock

Dr Alison Baverstock is an academic, author and mother of four.

Barry Stone

BARRY STONE has been a freelance writer and community arts activist for over two decades. His plays have bean performed on BBC Radio 4 and was the writer/co-producer of Blyth Valley Council's millennium play, Moses Brown is Waiting. A lifelong dog lover, Barry partly attributes his good physical health to the thousands of miles which he has clocked up whilst exercising the adored - and none too well behaved - dogs that have been a major part of his life. Barry has a young black Labrador called Bonzo when behaving ... and Asbo when misbehaving.

Christopher Matthew

Christopher Matthew is the author of Now We Are Sixty, When We Were Fifty, The Man Who Dropped the Le Creuset on his Toe and Dog Treats. He lives in London and Suffolk.

D.J. Taylor

D. J. Taylor is a writer and critic. His collection of short stories, After Bathing at Baxter's was published in 1997 and he is the author of six novels: Great Eastern Land (1986); Real Life (1992); English Settlement (1996); Trespass (1998), a satire of 1970s England; The Comedy Man (2001), the story of one half of a comedy duo; and Kept: A Victorian Mystery (2006). Several of his books are set in his home city of Norwich.His books of non-fiction include Afer the War: The Novel and England Since 1945 (1993); A Vain Conceit: British fiction in the 1980s (1989), a critical look at the quality of fiction-writing in Britain; and most recently, Bright Young People: The Rise and Fall of a Generation 1918-1940. He is also well-known for his biographies: Thackeray (1999); and Orwell: The Life, published in 2003 to coincide with the centenary of Orwell's birth. This book won the 2003 Whitbread Biography Award.

Daniel Mallory Ortberg

Daniel Mallory Ortberg is the co-creator of the Toast and the author of the New York Times Bestseller Texts From Jane Eyre.

Emlyn Rees

EMLYN REES spent his early twenties traveling around Asia and mixing cocktails in London for the likes of Sylvester Stallone and Princess Anne. He published his first crime novel aged twenty-five, his second a year later, and then co-wrote seven comedies with Josie Lloyd, including the Sunday Times bestseller Come Together. He is the editor of British and American paperback crime fiction imprint, Exhibit A, and lives on and around Brighton beach with Joanna Rees, aka Josie Lloyd.

Geoff Tibballs

Geoff Tibballs is the author of numerous bestselling humour titles.

Gill Hines

Gill Hines is an educator of huge experience. She has worked with a large number of parents, young people and teachers, offering workshops, mentoring and support in a wide variety of issues.

Jen Campbell

JEN CAMPBELL grew up in the northeast of England, and graduated from Edinburgh University with an MA in English Literature. She is a published poet and short-story writer. She lives in north London where she works at Ripping Yarns bookshop.

Joan Collins

JOAN COLLINS, OBE, has appeared in some sixty films and many television series, including the highly rated TV drama Dynasty. Her books have sold over 50 million copies in 30 languages. A devoted humanitarian, she lends her support and celebrity to causes that include finding a cure for breast cancer.

John Crace

JOHN CRACE is a staff feature writer for the Guardian, where he is best known for the literary pastiche 'Digested Read'. He has also written several books, including Vertigo: One Football Fan's Fear of Success. A committed Spurs supporter, he lives in south-west London but travels to N17 for every home game.

John Waters

John Waters is an American filmmaker, actor, writer and visual artist best known for his cult films, including Hairspray, Pink Flamingos and Cecil B. DeMented. He is also the author of a memoir, Role Models. He lives in Baltimore, Maryland.

Karl Shaw

Karl Shaw has worked as a journalist, in advertising and in marketing. His books include New York Times bestsellers Royal Babylon: The Alarming History of European Royalty and 5 People Who Died During Sex: and 100 Other Terribly Tasteless Lists.

Lisa Dickenson

Lisa Dickenson is the pseudonym for Beyoncé. OK, FINE, THAT'S NOT TRUE. Lisa lives by the Devon seaside, stuffing cream teas in the gobs of anyone who comes to visit, and writing stuff down that she hopes is funny. Her first novel was the copyright-infringing Sweet Valley Twins: The Twins Holiday Horror, which she wrote in primary school and gave up on after five pages. Twenty-ish years later Lisa went on to be a *real author* and wrote the Novelicious Debut of the Year, The Twelve Dates of Christmas, and never looked back.Follow Lisa online for all her book news and Beyoncé-obsessing:www.lisadickenson.comTwitter @LisaWritesStuffFacebook /LisaWritesStuffInstagram lisawritesstuff

Liz Strachan

Liz Strachan taught mathematics for 36 years in her home town of Montrose, Scotland. She has had over a hundred articles and short stories published and won a scholarship from the Scottish Association of Writers in 2008.

Louise Mortimer

LOUISE MORTIMER was educated at Yateley Hall, Daneshill and Tudor Hall. She has had a mixed career history: PR to an antiques' dealer, sales assistant, professional cook, kindergarten teacher at Garden House School, volunteer teacher for various charities in India and Mauritius. She has two children, Rebecca and Benjamin, and is currently semi-retired and living peacefully with slightly overweight border terrier, Marley Mortimer, in London.

M.J. Trow

M.J. Trow is an historian and writer whose books include A Brief History of Vampires. His documentary on Cleopatra was recently screened on the National Geographic Channel. Originally from Rhondda, South Wales, he lives on the Isle of Wight.

Mark Billingham

Mark Billingham has twice won the Theakston's Old Peculier Award for Crime Novel of the Year, and has also won a Sherlock Award for the Best Detective created by a British writer. Each of the novels featuring Detective Inspector Tom Thorne has been a Sunday Times bestseller. Sleepyhead and Scaredy Cat were made into a hit TV series on Sky 1 starring David Morrissey as Thorne, and a series based on the novels In the Dark and Time of Death was broadcast on BBC1. Mark lives in north London with his wife and two children.