. . . But the rest of the session raised some serious issues about keeping the proper distance with a subject who was a part of your life, as J. Michael Lennon dealt with before starting a biography of Norman Mailer. Lennon knew the writer for decades and became friendly with his children. He was even included in some of the letters Mailer wrote, and which Lennon edited and used as sources for his book. In his case, Lennon became a character in the story at times, and he wrestled with how much of himself to include, finally coming to the conclusion, “You can’t leave yourself out of certain junctures” when the biographer’s life overlaps with the subjects.