31 Famous Joan Didion Quotes

31 Famous Joan Didion Quotes

by / Comments Off / 116 View / Nov 20, 2014

Joan Didion is an author from California. She began writing at the early age of 5 and continued until she landed a job at Vogue magazine. After her time at Vogue she moved on to writing her own best seller books and screenplays for HBO. She still lives and writes in New York City.

“A place belongs forever to whoever claims it hardest, remembers it most obsessively, wrenches it from itself, shapes it, renders it, loves it so radically that he remakes it in his own image.”

“A single person is missing for you, and the whole world is empty.”

“Ask anyone committed to Marxist analysis how many angels dance on the head of a pin, and you will be asked in return to never mind the angels, tell me who controls the production of pins.”

“Character- the willingness to accept responsibility for one’s own life – is the source from which self-respect springs.”

“Grammar is a piano I play by ear. All I know about grammar is its power.”

“I closed the box and put it in a closet. There is no real way to deal with everything we lose.”

“I did not always think he was right nor did he always think I was right but we were each the person the other trusted.”

“I don’t know what I think until I write it down.”

“I don’t think anybody feels like they’re a good parent. Or if people think they’re good parents, they ought to think again.”

“I write entirely to find out what I’m thinking, what I’m looking at, what I see and what it means. What I want and what I fear.”

“Information is control.”

“Innocence ends when one is stripped of the delusion that one likes oneself.”

“Late afternoon on the West Coast ends with the sky doing all its brilliant stuff.”

“Life changes in the instant. The ordinary instant.”

“Memories are what you no longer want to remember.”

“Memory fades, memory adjusts, memory conforms to what we think we remember.”

“Read, learn, work it up, go to the literature.”

“Self-respect is a question of recognizing that anything worth having,has a price.”

“That is one last thing to remember: writers are always selling somebody out.”

“That was the year, my twenty-eighth, when I was discovering that not all of the promises would be kept, that some things are in fact irrevocable and that it had counted after all, every evasion and every procrastination, every mistake, every word, all of it.”

“The willingness to accept responsibility for one’s own life is the source from which self-respect springs.”

“To cure jealousy is to see it for what it is, a dissatisfaction with self.”

“To free us from the expectations of others, to give us back to ourselves–there lies the great, singular power of self-respect.”

“To have that sense of one’s intrinsic worth which constitutes self-respect is potentially to have everything: the ability to discriminate, to love and to remain indifferent. To lack it is to be locked within oneself, paradoxically incapable of either love or indifference.”

“Was it only by dreaming or writing that I could find out what I thought?”

“We forget all too soon the things we thought we could never forget.”

“We look for the sermon in the suicide, for the social or moral lesson in the murder of five. We interpret what we see, select the most workable of the multiple choices.”

“We tell ourselves stories in order to live.”

“Writing nonfiction is more like sculpture, a matter of shaping the research into the finished thing. Novels are like paintings, specifically watercolors. Every stroke you put down you have to go with. Of course you can rewrite, but the original strokes are still there in the texture of the thing.”

“You aren’t sure if you’re making the right decision – about anything, ever.”

“You have to pick the places you don’t walk away from.”