Motel Chronicles (Anglais) Broché – 1982
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Some of the other stories in this collection formed the basis of Wim Wenders' 1984 film PARIS, TEXAS, which Shepard wrote, and which happens to be one of my all-time favorite films. MOTEL CHRONICLES would be a wonderful introduction to Sam Shepard; I highly recommend it to anyone who has ever wondered about the desert, the road, and America (the beautiful & the ugly).
The entries swim back and forth from 1978 -1982, mapping the writer's peripatetic movement around the country, mostly in California and the west. It captures bits of his early identities, military childhood on the move, waiter, cowboy, actor, writer, friend, lover, husband, father. It is framed by portraits of being a child, the first entry is one of his earliest childhood memories in his mother's arms; the last is the adult caring for a mother felled by a brain aneurysm. This is no confessional or revealing autobiographical piece, however, just a writer at work pulling out inspiration from experience. Shepard is highly articulate, his portrayal of the contemporary west is priceless, and his poetry is not bad at all. The writing has an honest, non-star-turn quality to it.