John Kennedy Jr., My Inspiration Behind ‘Fairy Tale Interrupted’

Every book/novel has an inspiration behind. So had RoseMarie Terenzio after her New York Times bestselling book “Fairy Tale Interrupted“. Here in this post she shares with us what set her off to compile this anecdotes and why?

Author: RoseMarie Terenzio

I was John Kennedy Jr.’s Executive Assistant and publicist from 1994 until his death in July of 1999. I spent on average, 10 hours a day with John at George magazine and got to see a side of him that few knew. We laughed and talked and argued and it was the best job I could have ever imagined. Some called me his “gatekeeper,” as a big part of my job was controlling access to him.  It was my job to appease those who wanted access to the most famous man in the world, and to assist those who had it. It wasn’t an easy job, but I loved every minute of it.  Even the times when I found myself in tears in the bathroom over some mistake or stressing about the latest headline, I knew I was right where I was supposed to be.

If one had to conceptualize the type of person who would have worked for John Kennedy, a working class girl from The Bronx wouldn’t have been be the first image that came to mind. But that’s who I was and still am: a fish out of water thrown into a world I knew nothing about.  Although I was self-conscious in this land of Ivy League educations and New York elite, I managed to forge a friendship with John and his wife, Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy. They became part of my family—John was the older brother I never had and Carolyn was my fairy godmother—and I was fiercely loyal.

When John and Carolyn were gone, so was my life as I knew it. My earth cracked in half and it was the most inconceivable blow I could ever have imagined. I missed them; the world missed them. They were so young and had had so much to give to the world. John’s sense of service and Carolyn’s generosity would have benefitted so many. It’s impossible to imagine what could have been for them or for us.

For years after their deaths, I was approached time and time again to write a book. I turned down the million dollar offers and never had a second thought about it. I had no interest in dissecting or defending every tabloid rumor.

But when I did an interview in 2009 on Good Morning America to talk about the charity John founded in 1989, Reaching Up, I saw a renewed interest in John’s life and was approached again to write a book. Ten years had passed and I had gained some perspective so I was willing to reconsider. I started to realize that no tribute to what John accomplished with George magazine existed and he certainly wasn’t being remembered as the genius editor of a political magazine.

I wondered if there was a way to tell MY story; MY fairy tale interrupted, and for John to be remembered for an idea that was ahead of its time.

So here I am, telling my story about me and a John Kennedy that very few got to know. It’s the story of an ordinary girl whose life was intertwined with an extraordinary man.  It’s the story of two different people coming together and seeing that differences can be much less significant than similarities. The most unlikely pair becoming the best of friends.

This book is my tribute to two people who took me under their wing and protected and cared for me. I thought it was about time to honor them and remember them for more than the way they died and the fodder that followed. 

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