HOLLYWOOD—Let’s face it, self-publishing is the only way to get your book out there to the masses. People usually self-publish since most reputable publishing companies will not pay for unknown authors. The unknown author retains control of all creative decisions, publishing costs, and royalty profits. As a self-published author, you are generally shunned by bookstore managers for book signings, self-published authors may also receive the so called cold-shoulder from media refusing interviews, literary agents offering marketing help and other offers, unless you are a celebrity or famous.

This is why celebrities get so much money for their novels or memoirs. Suzanne Somers who passed away last week October 15, a day before her birthday was not only an actress but an accomplished businesswoman and author, who wrote more than 25 books, including two autobiographies, four diet books, and a book of poetry. While she was known for her character on “Three’s Company,” she was well known for advertising the ThighMaster, an exercise device. About 14 of her books were best-sellers and most were focused on health and well-being. I’m currently reading her “Sexy Forever: How to Fight Fat after Forty.”

The latest celebrity is Britney Spears who penned a book titled “The Woman in Me.” The memoir was recently published, and the media is having a field day with it. She has been in the limelight for all of her life. As a teenager and an adult, when she was imprisoned under a conservatorship that stripped her of some of the most basic human rights. For 13 years, she could not see her two sons without approval.

Her driver’s license was confiscated, the court-imposed order, overseen by her father, was lifted two years ago when a judge ruled Spears could make her own decisions again. It was back in 1998 that she exploded onto the pop charts; she was an overnight sensation. Her songs were written for her, and her public image was to portray her as young and sexy. In one of her book’s chilling moments, Spears recalls her father telling her he’s assumed legal control of her personal and professional affairs.

The early chapters of the book stress how much people underestimated her. In her previous book, titled “Heart to Heart,” co-written with her mother Lynne back in 2000, she maintained, I’m not the party animal that people think I am.

No revelation, she mentioned Justin Timberlake in her recent book, she talks about having a medical abortion during her relationship with him. Despite the trauma she went back to work after Timberlake dumped her by text on the set of a music video. The couple’s break-up only increased the appetite for gossip about Brit’s personal life. The tabloids hounded her.

The time she shaved her head, was her way of getting back to the media. The turning point comes when a nurse shows her footage of fans discussing the Free Britney movement. With a renewed sense of courage, she hires a new lawyer and places a 911 call reporting herself as a victim of conservatorship abuse. She’s been free for about two years, but the after-effects will take years to reclaim. She describes her father, Jamie Spears as an alcoholic and a failed businessman.

It’s truly impossible to read “The Woman in Me” and not feel outraged and sad at the same time on Spears behalf. It’s written with warmth and insight into a life that was turned upside down and reliving her terror dancing with a snake at the 2001 MTV Video Music Awards show is engaging. We are left with a cautionary tale about fame and fortune and the corrupting influence of money. With a glimmer of hope that a woman is free from an adult life that had been dictated by others. In her own words, it’s time to find herself.

Rose’s Scoop: Everyone is writing books this year, Prince Harry set the tone for memoirs in 2023. Pamela Anderson, Paris Hilton, Elliot Page and many others. Being released soon is ”My Name is Barbra,” written by Streisand herself, it will publish on November 7, 2023 and is now available for pre-order. In her book, she tells her own story about her life and extraordinary career, from growing up in Brooklyn to her first star-making appearances in New York nightclubs to her breakout performance in “Funny Girl.” The book is funny, honest, and charming.