Who Is Caroline Calloway? New Details On ‘Influencer ‘And Her Ghostwriter Natalie Beach Who’s Exposing All Her Dirty Secrets
And she spills all the tea.
Natalie Beach’s essay reads like a novel. You’re captivated by her vivid recollection of her life with Calloway and each paragraph leaves you craving more because of how swiftly the fame and recognition begin to build. I have a few problems with this article that left me confused. Before I read the piece, I expected to hear how Beach felt manipulated into writing as Calloway ghostwriter, but this false impression evaporates as she paints her truth totally differently than I had expected, altering the takeaway from the article. In the lead up to the release of this article, we all anticipated that Beach was basically held against her will in doing this for Calloway, but that is far from the truth.
In my opinion, both girls are at fault here, but I do believe Beach enabled Calloway by continually offering to contribute to her writing and posts. From what I gathered in her own words, she was never the one who Calloway scouted out during these collaborations, rather, it was Beach who actively requested to contribute in Calloway’s work, knowing full well that it would mean sacrificing her chance in obtaining recognition for her work. To me, the overall theme in the dynamic between these two was that Beach looked for any excuse to come to Calloway’s rescue who she viewed as a damsel in distress, while Calloway viewed Beach as a friend willing and eager to help, who she could easily take advantage of.
This scandal parallels well to the true story of plagiarist painter Walter Keane. Basically, for years, Walter Keane used the work created by his wife Margaret Keane and cons everyone into believing her work is actually his own. After his unbelievable success, Margaret eventually comes forward, many years later, and proves she is indeed the original artist, exposing Walter as a fraudulent artist — earning her the recognition she rightfully deserves.
Ever since Beach wrote and published her article for The Cut, Calloway’s life and career has come crumbling down right before the public’s eye, as she has not handled the scandal well on her social media platforms.
So what all went down between these two and how did this all begin? Who is Caroline Callowa? Who is Natalie Beach? Read on to find out.
1. They met sophomore year of college in a writing class.
Seven years ago, the two met at NYU in a non-fiction writing class. Calloway took a liking to Beach’s writing and the two hit it off. They became very close friends who spent practically every day at Calloway’s house after school.
2. Calloway bought her initial batch of Instagram followers to gain exposure on the app.
Initially, Calloway kept Beach under false pretenses in regard to how she got her thousands of Instagram followers. It wasn’t until later when Calloway confided in Beach and revealed the real reason she received thousands of followers was due to “taking out ads designed to look like posts to promote her account and buying tens of thousands of followers,” according to Beach. Calloway’s reasoning for this was to create a persona where she could be viewed as highly influential to professionals.
3. Beach began editing Calloway’s Instagram posts a year after they met.
The start of Beach’s involvement in Calloway’s social media presence began when the two took a trip to Sicily. Beach was designated as the photographer and once Calloway was satisfied, they went back to the hotel “brainstorming the caption together,” Beach wrote. “After she posted the photo, she would hold her phone in her palm and watch as the comments rolled in, responding to each one.”
4. Beach offered to make Instagram posts for Calloway to repay her for an $800 airline ticket.
After a mishap on the return home from their trip from Italy, the two had to miss three non-refundable flights due to bad wind. Beach was unable to afford new tickets, so Calloway offered to pay for them. As a means of paying Calloway back for the $800 airline ticket, Beach offered to write and edit Calloway’s Instagram posts as work, to which Calloway accepted.
“I was now officially broke and didn’t know how I’d afford to get home. Caroline saved the day. She spoke the language, pretty-cried in front of airport staff, and sat cross-legged on the floor of the Milan airport with her parents’ credit cards fanned in front of her,” Beach wrote.
Beach continued, “I was the one who offered to spend the summer editing Caroline’s Instagram posts to pay her back…Working off the $800 or so I owed Caroline was the only plan I had. Besides, there was something I liked about being bound closer to her, forced to stay in her life through our arrangement.”
5. Beach continued to push Calloway in allowing her to contribute to her posts.
After being out of touch with each other for some time, Beach discovered through mutual friends that Calloway was on a press tour and had signed with an agent. Beach decided to reach out to Calloway, in the hopes of reconnecting.
Beach sent a series of three messages before Calloway responded:
“You must be so happy, what with 90,000 followers and counting … I feel strange being an excited onlooker,” I emailed her with no response.”
“Wanna bounce ideas off me? Let me know! I’m here for you!”
“YO get back to me, girl. I just wanna check-in and be your ally and do some planning!”
Calloway then agreed to meet up and after some talking, the two decided to work together. Later that night, Calloway asked Beach to work for her as a paid editor.
6. Calloway backed out of her $500,000 book deal and had to return $100,000 to her publisher.
To work around this, Beach said, “I bought us time with the publishers by writing a quarter of the manuscript by myself, but Caroline hated it so much that she threatened suicide if I wrote anymore…” she continued, “Caroline claimed her failure to write the manuscript was an intentional stand against the patriarchy and a publishing industry that insisted her life story be defined by the men she dated.”
7. Calloway is melting down on her social media
Caroline Calloway isn’t handling Nataie Beach’s essay well at all. Calloway’s Instagram posts reveal a downward spiral and the comments are begging her to step away from the ‘gram. The post below is captioned in part: I am a cringey person who cares a whole lot and hat is just my truth. But one of my greatest super powers is that I never let my strobing desire to be liked get in the way of being true to who I am. I think this grid-wide infographic re-cap is fascinating and significant for my readers and cool. Now if you’ll excuse me I have to get back to writing my response for @thecut. Working title: “I Am Caroline Calloway.”
Comments range from: “Honey… it’s time to put the phone down for a few days,” to “It’s 9/11. Can you not find another day to make all about yourself? For God’s sake, put down your phone. This is so gross to watch,” to “Have y’all noticed that she never once apologized to Natalie in a single one of her posts?” to “lmao someone took wayyyy too much adderall”
Elizabeth Ward is a writing student finishing her bachelor’s at the University of Louisville. You can find her painting, dancing to her heart’s content, or binging the Office.