Shake It Off: Taylor Swift Is Not Writing A Memoir

Blank space on the bestseller list belongs to another fandom

Taylor Swift is many things—international pop star and confirmed Eagles fan—but not a published author. In early May, the Swiftie fandom, famously into Easter eggs and numerology, descended upon a purported top secret celebrity memoir, set to be released this summer, by a then-unknown author. 

“Am I delusional for ordering a book that nobody knows anything about on the chance it’s a Taylor Swift memoir? Yes,” tweeted @SkelletonQueenX on May 9. “Am I also a genius for ordering on Amazon because they don’t charge until it’s shipped just in case it isn’t Taylor Swift? Also yes.”

Variety and the AV Club have great explainers about how fans got from what was officially known only as “4C Untitled Flatiron Nonfiction Summer 2023” to the pop star. But rest assured that it involves a ton of mental gymnastics and the number 13. Variety reports that Swifties’ ferocious pre-ordering sent the memoir to number two on the Amazon charts and the top spot at Barnes & Noble.

While Swift’s fans were wrong, they came pretty close. Publisher Macmillan announced May 12 that the mystery book is an oral history of the similarly cult-followed Korean pop band BTS, bringing Beyond The Story safely back onto the Amazon bestseller list as of mid-May.

Still, a number of less internationally famous writers took the chance to push their own memoirs amid the Swift fan frenzy: “[D]on’t worry she does have a pseudonymous novel coming out June 13 from that very same publisher,” tweeted author Julia Fine with a link to her own memoir.

“Not everyone knows this, but Taylor Swift also wrote another book, under a pseudonym,” wrote Stephanie Insley Hershinow on Twitter. “It’s called Born Yesterday: Inexperience and the Early Realist Novel.”

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Katie Smith

Katie Smith is a Philadelphia-based writer. Find her on Instagram @saddy_yankee for cat pics.

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