Personal Process Of Writing By Joan Didion

Decent Essays

Life itself is unpredictable. In an instant, your whole life as you know it could be turned upside down or right side up, without any warning at all. On December 30, 2003, Joan Didion’s life took an unexpected turn when her husband “suffered a massive coronary event” in their living room. As she discusses in her book, he passed away despite the efforts of paramedics and doctors, and she was left to pick up the broken pieces of her life without her significant other of nearly 40 years. In the midst of all of the heartache she faced, her daughter was also comatose in the hospital after getting a severe case of pneumonia and septic shock. The book that she wrote after and during these events was titled, “The Year of Magical Thinking,” …show more content…

Furthermore, throughout the book, she talks about the struggles she faces with understanding the event of her husband's death and her daughter's sickness. She explains that she knows “in her rational thoughts that it was an accident”, while emotionally, she wonders why she should donate his shoes, holding on to the last shred of hope that he would come back. These back and forth feelings and questions that she has internally, seemed to continue throughout the whole year that she writes about, and gradually become easier to handle. Therefore, she uses this opportunity that she has as a writer to work through her grief and distress about the loss of her husband. Another similarity between the essay and the book is her idea of attempting to make blurry pictures within her head clear. In the essay, she says that she writes about “images that shimmer around the edges.” She continues on to say that when an individual sees that shimmer, all the writing is done for you, and once you decipher what it all means, that you can understand the big picture in your mind and its meaning. The entire account that is, “The Year of Magical Thinking,” is an abundance of randomly occurring memories from days that her and her husband spent together in years past.

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