"To free us from the expectations of others, to give us back to ourselves - there lies the great, singular power of self-respect."
"Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power."Joan Didion on Abraham Lincoln
"Being powerful is like being a lady. If you have to tell people you are, you aren't."Joan Didion on Margaret Thatcher
"Knowledge will give you power, but character respect."Joan Didion on Bruce Lee
"All things are subject to interpretation whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth."Joan Didion on Friedrich Nietzsche
"Character is power."Joan Didion on Booker T. Washington
"Writing fiction is for me a fraught business, an occasion of daily dread for at least the first half of the novel, and sometimes all the way through. The work process is totally different from writing nonfiction. You have to sit down every day and make it up."
"Was it only by dreaming or writing that I could find out what I thought?"
"I write entirely to find out what I'm thinking, what I'm looking at, what I see and what it means. What I want and what I fear."
"Before I'd written movies, I never could do big set-piece scenes with a lot of different speakers - when you've got twelve people around a dinner table talking at cross purposes. I had always been impressed by other people's ability to do that."
"Grammar is a piano I play by ear. All I know about grammar is its power."