Times Square Billboard Quotes from Dear Nobody: The True Diary of Mary Rose, edited by Gillian McCain and Legs McNeil, and we're not even allowed to repeat it! Real Life Teen's Diary Depicts Brutal, Honest Reflections on Adolescence
NEW YORK, May 15, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- The Great White Way woke up this morning to a controversial billboard featuring the unapologetic, expletive-laden language of an adolescent girl. The ad space quotes directly from the post-humous diary of a Pennsylvanian teenager entitled DEAR NOBODY: THE TRUE DIARY OF MARY ROSE, but in a slightly censored form.
Concerns over G-rated advertisers and the use of the word "dick" had the ad space owners, City Outdoor, requesting that McCain and McNeil, who are best known for their book Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk, come up with four alternate quotations for the billboard. They made many suggestions that were rejected at every turn. Any version that included the letter "D" or even the substitution of grammatical expletives such as "?!#" and **** were considered "too close" to a curse word.
Struck by Mary Rose's gritty, unflinching candor, lyrical writing and heartbreaking life, McCain and McNeil vowed to bring her diary to publication. They believed so powerfully in Mary Rose's story—and that it should be shared with the world—that they spent over $35,000 dollars of their own money and nearly 5 years in court to make sure that Mary Rose's voice would not be forgotten.
Praised as "a rare, no-holds-barred documentation of an American teenager's life" DEAR NOBODY: THE TRUE DIARY OF MARY ROSE is heir to the classic Go Ask Alice, but in this case, it's all true. While Go Ask Alice proved to be a hoax—an invention of its Avon editor—DEAR NOBODY is so raw and edgy that its authenticity rings off every page.
Beginning with her first entry at age 15, the reader is thrust into an emotional roller coaster as she describes battles with her mother's abusive boyfriends, alcoholism, addiction, bullying, and sexual assault, and ending with her untimely death at age 17. Blunt and brilliant, her contemplations on love and social alienation are profound, powerful, and universal.
A national guerilla marketing campaign will spreading DEAR NOBODY to other American cities, including San Francisco, Los Angeles and Chicago.
About The Editors
Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain are best known for their book Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk, which was one of Mary Rose's favorite books. When they aren't collaborating, McCain writes poetry and McNeil writes non-fiction. They are currently working on two new oral histories together.