" We tell ourselves stories, in order to live. "
From The White Album by Joan Didion
Among the books I'm reading is Joan Didion's Where I Was From. I think Didion is an astonishing writer. I read her stuff, happen upon a sentence. I read the sentence. Then I read it again and again before I move on. I read that sentence like it's a poem within an essay within a story, a narrative that is, ostensibly, about Joan Didion. But what that sentence says isn't just about Joan Didion. It's about you and it's about me. There it is, in so few words, the story of our lives.
In Where I Was From, Didion writes about where she is from. The state of California. It's a book about Joan Didion. It's a book about California. But it's more than that. It's a book about you, and me. It's a book about Easthampton, Massachusetts, Holyoke, Massachusetts, Hartford and Waterbury.
Where I was from. Talk about a motherload of material. Didion knows how to mine it.