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Reporter to Help Rep. Kennedy Write Addiction Memoir – What are the Rules?

The duo of Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.) and  Mary Ann Akers coming together to write Coming Clean, his “intimate” addiction memoir, isn’t too strange for reporters who worked on Capitol Hill when Akers worked for Roll Call‘s HOH. She and Kennedy could often be seen chatting extensively apart from the reporter pack in the Speaker’s Lobby. There was a comfort level between them that simply didn’t exist for Kennedy and some other reporters.

Akers, most recently with WaPo, has not written a story for the daily newspaper since Aug. 18, 2010.

These are the questions I’ve posed to WaPo PR. Questions 2-4 are contingent on Akers still working for WaPo.

1. Is Akers on book leave from WaPo or does she no longer work there? (New York Businesswire reports that she was “most recently with the Post.” )

2. Can the book be written whether Kennedy is sober or not during the writing stages of the book? Will Kennedy and Akers include facts about his current sobriety status? (A Roll Call story cites him going off the wagon last spring and doing shots of Vodka at a Capitol Hill bar last spring. Reports have resurfaced since that time. In a WaPo story earlier this year, he says this about his sobriety: that he is “sober today.”)

3. Akers is allegedly a reporter on the “national” beat which includes Congress and yet is teaming up with a lawmaker. Where do book profits go?

4. What kinds of disclosures will these profits require?

The NYT Arts section has a story on the upcoming book today. The memoir’s release date is set for fall of 2011. NYBusinesswire also has news on Coming Clean, which they dub an “intimate memoir” about Kennedy’s “inner demons.” Read it here.

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