When it comes to writing a biography, privacy’s always an issue. The question is, whose? I may sign a contract with one person, but I’m usually involved with several. If it’s a family story, opinions run deep.
For example, my great-grandmother worked for the Hungarian Consul in London—one Count Komlósi—and ended up having five children with him, all out of wedlock. This was unmentionable at the time, and even long afterwards. Her granddaughter (my aunt) nursed the secret of our ‘bastard blood’ for over sixty years! She was mortified when it finally came to light in the 1990s. However, my siblings and I were delighted to learn that we had noble blood—even if it was Hungarian, even if it was bastard!
Whatever your story, you need confidence that it’ll be handled with discretion and restraint.