Saturday, December 03, 2005
So with some help from Buendia (who reckons she should have been an editor, not an architect), I’ve come up with something of a plan for the Mississippi book: less Mississippi, more David.
I’d thought I would have something important to say about the red states, and urban decline and all that, and while I did see some interesting stuff, most of my conclusions could have been reached in the comfort of an armchair a long way from Iowa or Arkansas.
Also, how much does any travel writer really get inside a place that they only visit for 24 hours, before heading off to the next target?
I realised that the more interesting topics were more personal – how I came to have this troubled but affectionate relationship with America, and what I’ve gleaned from living in 3 different parts of it, not just drifting through.
The photo shows part of the planning for the next draft – some Mississippi stuff is still there (in pink, if you’re interested) – but there’s a lot more Kansas, San Francsico and Santa Fe in there (green post-its), and some broader themes (the yellow stuff).
Now all I have to do is write it (again).