While most think of the creative energy of Los Angeles as being pumped into film production and the music scene, a great deal of important American literature has been inspired by the Southern California city. From the delicately crafted essays written by Joan Didion to the booze-addled prose of Charles Bukowski, Los Angeles has long been a home to those with a literary inclination.
For Joe Olujic, this is part of the appeal of Los Angeles. Having read the works of Didion and Raymond Chandler, and having heard the powerfully sung lyrics of Jim Morrison, Olujic has said that he can almost get a sense of what the writers felt as they expressed themselves through the written word. Of all of the words that have been written about Los Angeles, Olujic cites Didion’s “Los Angeles Notebook” as among his favorites.
Of course, the literary scene is still thriving throughout the city of Los Angeles. There is one coffee shop in particular that only those who are really plugged-in are aware of, and on any given day there will undoubtedly be several writers working on novels and short stories in the shop’s enclosed outdoor patio. The patio itself is an ideal space for writing, with its many plants and flowers giving it the air of a garden oasis in an otherwise concrete jungle.
For those with a passion for literature, it is possible to see a whole different side of Los Angeles that even many of the city’s longtime residents will never get to know.