09/13/2007 at 09:00 AM EDT
Although it is her unkind treatment of former employer Barbara Walters in the pages of Rosie O'Donnell
's upcoming memoir, Celebrity Detox
, that has been generating headlines
, the former "Queen of Nice" also bashes herself in her book – literally.
As a child growing up on New York's Long Island, O'Donnell, now 45, would fracture her own limbs with "a baseball bat" or a "wooden hanger," she reveals in the book, reports The Insider
In the excerpt, first revealed in Roger Friedman's FoxNews.com column
, O'Donnell writes that in choosing what to break she'd go for "My hands and fingers usually. No one knew. My secret."
Seeking to explain her motivation for the self-destructive act, she reportedly writes, "Proof that I had some value, enough to be fixed."
She adds later, "There were many benefits to having a cast. In the middle of the night, it was a weapon." Why she would need a weapon in the middle of the night is not addressed, Friedman reports.
As the book, which is to be published Oct. 9, gains momentum – on Thursday morning it was ranked No. 10 on the Amazon.com bestseller list (and No. 1 on both the site's entertainment books and
biographies and memoirs lists) – O'Donnell fans are contacting the author on her Web site
Writes "joyce": "Be proud of your book." Responds O'Donnell: "i am proud of it." A "Nancy" inquires if O'Donnell will grant interviews for it, but Rosie responds that she doesn't want to see her words "all cut up for sound bites/i would rather the book speaks for itself/some stuff was hard to write/difficult to discuss."
Surprisingly, the book excerpt offered by Insider
also features O'Donnell's pleasant-enough description of her former sparring partner
on The View
, Elisabeth Hasselbeck.
"Elisabeth, antiabortion, pro Bush, pro war, believes in everything I don't, and I believe in everything she doesn't," O'Donnell writes. "She's as slender as I am fat, as restrained as I am vociferous, as polite as I am frank. ... Right from the start ... I could see something fierce, a fist in the frill, and I liked that."
Meanwhile, on Wednesday's View
, a minor but notable war of words erupted, with Walters and recent arrival Whoopi Goldberg
taking on Hasselbeck for dredging up former Clinton White House intern Monica Lewinsky during a discussion about presidential hopeful Mitt Romney's Mormon religion (which long ago distanced itself from the practice of polygamy).
Hasselbeck triggered the flare-up by suggesting Romney might somehow pull another woman out of the closet, as Clinton did with Lewinsky.
"This is a good woman who has gotten a masters degree at the London School of Economics!" Walters, in reference to Lewinsky, declared as she shook a finger in Hasselbeck's face, the New York Post
reports. "She's doing her best to have a life. Enough with Monica, everybody can move on."
Goldberg asked Hasselbeck not to mention Lewinsky again. "I'm asking you to do me a favor because there's no reason for it today," said Goldberg, who is known as a pal to both Bill and Hillary Clinton. "This has nothing to do with Bill Clinton."