Jim Carroll (before he died)

We were talking about Jim Carroll on another thread. This is an interesting account of what his life was like in 1976 when he was living in Bolinas, a small town 13 miles north of San Francisco, when he was working on the final edits of “Basketball Diaries.” He had fled New York City to get away from the heroin scene, and he was still pretty much completely unknown at this point. “Basketball Diaries” was published in 1978. And I wouldn’t get my hands on a paperback copy until 1980 when he started to explode as kind of a sensation. And then further solidified his rep with “People Who Died.”

But it’s interesting. He had been a pretty brilliant artist, writer, poet for 15 years — at that point — living this very interesting life, while living pretty much in obscurity, until he suddenly emerged as a force to be reckoned with. And considering what a sketchy life he had lived as a young man, he could have just as easily ODed at numerous points, and his diaries could have just ended up in the trash with the rest of his meager possessions, and never seen the light of day. But somehow he managed to get it out there….. It just made me wonder about all the other talented artists over the years, who’s work never made it to the light of day because of one reason or the other.


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