Joan Didion is known for her fiction and non-fiction writing. Born
in 1934 in Sacramento, California, she began writing when she was still
Didion worked at Vogue magazine for two years after getting a degree
from University of California, Berkeley. While working at Vogue, she
wrote her first novel, 1963ís Run, River. Slouching Towards Bethlehem,
her collection of non-fiction pieces, including many that she wrote as a
magazine writer, was published in 1968.
Didionís second novel, Play It As It Lays, was published in 1970. It was
named one of Time magazineís Best English -language Novels from 1923 to
2005. It was adapted for film two years later, with Didion co-writing
the screenplay with her husband. She has written three additional
novels, A Book of Common Prayer, Democracy, and The Last Thing He
In addition to fiction, Didion has also written a number of non-fiction
books. Many of these books are based on her work as a journalist. Her
2006 book, The Year of Magical Thinking, was a non-fiction account of
her experience of losing her husband. It won Didion a National Book
Award for Nonfiction.
Didion was also granted the National Book Foundationís Medal for
Distinguished Contribution to American Letters in 2007. Among other
awards, she has been granted honorary Doctor of Letters degrees from
Harvard and Yale Universities.
Didion continues to write, with her most recent book being 2011ís Blue
Nights. The memoir is a follow-up to The Year of Magical Thinking as
well as her 2003 memoir, Where I Was From.