Amazing how books and authors come back into your life. For me, I remember the first Donald Goines book I ever read.
Dopefiend. Read it in when I was living in early 90s San Francisco. Remember living with a bunch of folks and working like crazy in Cafe’s or wherever else I could find work (Even worked in the backroom of Lohman’s at one point taking dresses off the conveyer belt that went from the women’s dressing rooms to the storeroom where I worked with a few other kids from different parts of the city.
Carried Dopefiend around in my back pocket for a good month of one of those summers. Remember the realness with which he wrote – how unafraid he was in plowing into his story. Read Street Players after that. Then, as life does, I moved on, but as a good book goes, it just stayed with me.
Last week, leaving the house, about to go to work, and finished with my second book, I had the ability to read something for pleasure instead of research.
Saw on my shelf an old copy of a biography called Donald Goines Writes No More. I always think books have a way of presenting themselves to you in life when you’re open to it. A book actually finds you. That relationship between reader and author is very intimate in that respect. While reading what he went through in his life, I find myself lending those thoughts to characters in my next book. I don’t really keep anything for myself – everything goes to my characters. Guess that doesn’t leave much for my life in the way of knowing things, but that’s fine.
At the end, everything I know will end up in my characters anyhow.