The Other Side of Me (book)

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First edition (publ. Warner Books)

The Other Side Of Me is the autobiographical memoirs of American writer Sidney Sheldon published in 2005. It was also his final book.


Growing up in 1930s America, the young Sidney knew what it was to struggle to get by. Millions were out of work and the Sheldon family was forced to journey around America in search of employment. Grabbing every chance he could, Sidney worked nights as a bus-boy, a clerk, an usher - anything - but he dreamt of becoming something more.

His dream was to become a writer and to break into Hollywood. By a stroke of luck, he found work as a reader for David Selznick, a top Hollywood producer, and the dream began to materialise.

Sheldon worked through the night writing stories for the movies. Little by little, he gained a reputation and soon found himself in demand by the hottest producers and stars in Hollywood.

But this was wartime. Hollywood and Sidney had to play their part. He trained as a pilot in the US Army Air Corps in Utah and then waited in New York for the call to arms which could put a stop to his dreams of stardom. While waiting, he wrote librettos for Broadway shows.

Returning to Hollywood and working with actors like Cary Grant and Shirley Temple; with legendary producers like David Selznick and Dore Schary; and musical stars like Irving Berlin, Judy Garland and Gene Kelly, memories of poverty were finally behind Sheldon. This is his story: the story of a life on both sides of the tracks, of struggles and of success, and of how one man rose against the odds to become the master of his game.

In this book, Sheldon reveals that he was subject to frequent mood swings and often felt inappropriate emotions for his circumstances. At age 17, he seriously considered suicide. Later, at 31, he observed that he felt suicidal on what should have been the happiest day of his life when he won an Academy Award for his screenplay for The Bachelor and the Bobbysoxer. He sought psychiatric help and was diagnosed as manic depressive (bipolar).

In spite of his mood swings and a career full of ups and downs, he dedicates this book: "For my beloved granddaughters, Lizzy and Rebecca. So that they will know what a magical journey I had".