Back When Kelley-Oprah Coverage Was Novel

By David Comment

oprahbook.pngEverybody is talking about Kitty Kelley’s unauthorized Oprah Winfrey biography. Google racked up more than 500 news stories on it in the last 24 hours alone and it is currently ranked number two on Amazon. We thought it’d be refreshing to take a step back to December 2008, when Kelley was just two years deep in her research.

In a remarkable display of prescience, Chicago Magazine’s Josh Schollmeyer set out to chronicle the making of a future hit. Schollmeyer was rejected by Kelley, but he went ahead with it anyway. Because really, why not? By talking to a number of people she interviewed (a tactic we fully support), Schollmeyer was just giving Kitty Kelley the Kitty Kelley treatment.

There are a few good encounters, but this one seems to sum it all up. It’s from Chris Clark, one of Oprah’s early mentors: “For nearly two hours, he sat with Kelley and recounted all of this. ‘[Kelley] puts you at ease immediately,’ Clark recalls. ‘She makes you feel like a long-lost friend, someone you can really confide in … Then she asked about sex, drugs, and boyfriends. The interview ended shortly after I told her that I didn’t know anything about sex, drugs, and boyfriends when it came to Oprah.'”

Read the rest here: Chicago magazine: Bagging the Media Queen