The result was a book, "My Dark Places," one of the best examples of intimate true crime ever written. Last weekend, Ellroy wrote about returning to Los Angeles in the Los Angeles Times' West Magazine. He wrote, in part:
I was midway through a three-year crack-up. It was the upshot of long transits of overwork and emotional seepage held in check by near-insane ambition. Brutal sleeplessness and panic attacks. Sobbing jags and weightless plummets. It was a six-week hotel stay. My alleged L.A. agenda: take a neurofeedback course to curb insomnia. My real L.A. mission: hide out and seek safety in the wild-ass place that made me. ... This essay is a travel document and a homecoming brief. It will stand as my final autobiographical statement. The gist is simple: My birthplace made me, I ran away, I ran back.If you've ever wanted a glimpse behind a tortured soul, a creative presence and a guy who just wants something he's never really had, click through to Ellroy's essay.
Photo by Damon Winter / LATimes