The Journal of Joyce Carol Oates
The Journal of Joyce Carol Oates, edited by Greg Johnson, offers a rare glimpse into the private thoughts of this extraordinary writer, focusing on excerpts written during one of the most productive decades of Oates's long career. Far more than just a daily account of a writer's writing life, these intimate, unrevised pages candidly explore her friendship with other writer...more
Reading the two together helped me as a writer. I especially liked reading about her process. It amazed me how committed she is to the art of writing. At least during these years, she wrote every single day, often in marathon sessions. I wish I had the time to do that -- and dedicati ...more
The practical nature of what she was aiming to record can make this hav ...more
As always, JCO’s prose is rich, compelling and infused with energy, regardless of the subject matter. There are no wasted words, no trite sentiments, nothing pretentious or held back. She writes as one po ...more
Sounds very nice and down to earth, by the way, on a personal level. But peering into her writing life has been the trippy part. Spends a good deal of each novel -- and who knows, of many of her 1.5 million short stories and poems and essays, too -- driving herself into a state of almost ecstatic misery. She produces so much be ...more
The journal is at times very similar to her chameleon writing style - a tone poem here, a burst of clear-eyed realism there, and ...more
As soon as I saw her journal in Barnes and Noble I had to have it. As readers we love to do our best to get into the minds of the writers we admire. And rarely if ever do we get that chance while they are still alive and well.
This journal covers from 1972-1982. She speaks of her characters, book ideas, daily ...more
One thing I found tiring was Oates' general disregard to any other piece of writing. Wilde, Shelley, etc. - she always has something negatively critical about what she is writing, except for perhaps John Updike. It makes Oates seem very pretentious, and who likes re ...more
I've been a big fan of JCO since I was in HS, even after she snubbed me when I saw her speak in 1995. Her journal has lots of valuable information on writing, and even life in general. Even though she tends to be snobby, takes her privilege for granted, and a tad pretentious at times, she's still a great writer, and reading her journal was a rewarding experience. I shall probably do it again when I am through with school for good and am able to resume my own writing, it's inspirat ...more
I got the book from the library, but want to purchase my own copy when it comes out in paperback. There are too many quotes I want to go back to.
Most interesting to me were her ruminations about the significance of violence in her work.