Jottings, 2022



I did confide in a diary from the time I was nine or ten. I remember one diary well from this era—red plaid vinyl, with a strap and a fancy lock. The key was lost and the strap had to be cut. I gushed into spiral, lined notebooks in my twenties. Rereading any of these created massive disappointment, so I destroyed them—I am not sad to say. I feel anger toward them, about them. That little girl or the woman understood little or was unable say what she meant to say, and this is one reason I labor on with my fiction. Most of these daily jottings for stories in progress will remain forever lost or hidden, but this sketch work represents, for me, a purer form of diary. Here is one page from this morning.

Diane Williams is the author of ten books of fiction. She has a new collection of stories forthcoming from Soho Press next year. She is the founder and editor of NOON.