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NYT Responds to Ghostwriting Disputes, Sort Of

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New York Times food writer Julia Moskin has responded (sort of) to cookbook authors like Rachael Ray and Gwyneth Paltrow who took issue with her recent article, "I Was a Cookbook Ghostwriter." Both object to what Ray referred to as the inaccurate implication that their cookbooks were written by ghostwriters. Or, as Paltrow put it, "No ghost writer on my cookbook, I wrote every word myself."

Moskin's response deals with definitions: she clarifies the difference between ghost writing and "ghost-cooking," or when someone is hired to invent recipes for a cookbook. It is the latter that, as she writes, "carried a strong stigma in the food world."

Yet that doesn't quite seem to address Ray and Paltrow's concerns. As New York Post restaurant critic Steve Cuozzo tweeted, Moskin "wrote that Paltrow had collaborator. She says she wrote every word. That's not a dispute over recipes." Food writer Regina Schrambling added, "First the #NYT cost-cutters came for the dictionaries. Anyone look up the definition of ghostwriter before hitting the frappe button?"

For what it's worth, Ray backs up Paltrow's claims that she wrote her own book. Moskin's response to the whole debacle notes that the Times was also contacted by Mario Batali and representatives for Jamie Oliver, who "objected to what they saw as the implication that they were not the authors of their own work." Nowhere does Moskin address Paltrow and Ray's claims that they were not contacted for fact checking on the piece.

· More About Chefs, Their Recipes and Who Writes Cookbooks [NYT]
· All Cookbook Coverage on Eater [-E-]

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