Patti Smith has opened up about her award winning new book 'Just Kids' based on a past relationship.
Patti Smith is one of rock's most eloquent figures. Albums such as 'Horses' introduced a new language for rock music, mixing post Beat Generation literature with a knowledge of what would become punk.
A vastly influential songwriter, Patti Smith recently completed her new book 'Just Kids'. Focussing on her relationship with photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, the non-fiction book contains a glittering list of guest figures.
Given across the board praise, 'Just Kids' was a labour of love for Patti Smith. Speaking to Spinner, the writer explained that she went through her archives to sift through diaries and letters before beginning the book.
"I went over a lot of materials," she said. "Robert's letters to me, my daily diaries of when I was 20; and when I lived at the Chelsea (Hotel), I wrote down what happened, every day. I have little notations like 'Cut Robert's hair,' 'Met Janis Joplin,' 'Got a new book store job,' 'Met Salvador Dali.' So I have the exact dates of when these things happened, so it helped in providing a proper chronology."
Continuing, Patti Smith revealed that she always keeps a diary - a habit inspired by her grandmother. "I kept diaries as sort of a family history," she explained. "My grandmother kept diaries and I wanted to be a writer, but I couldn't always bring myself to write. So I disciplined myself about what happened in the day; I still do it. I write something almost every day, even if it's just a list of things to think about."
Containing some very personal revelations, 'Just Kids' was written at the suggestion of Robert Mapplethorpe who spoke with the singer before he died. "I promised Robert the day before he died that I would write it," she said.
"And since I was the only one who knew him this intimately when he was young, and because we went through so much together as lovers and friends and artists, he could count on me to be truthful."