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CALIFIA:  The moment I began to create the first screen on the computer, I could see it happening: the weary and beleagured Samuel Walker - leaving the Tejon Ranch with his wife, Willing Stars, and the renegade mission Indians - desperate to find a place to hide the heavy gold he had mined in the Sierras.

And the generations that followed, dreamers all, risking their lives for the belief that the gold was still there, buried and waiting for the one who could decode the clues, read the hypertext of star lore and plot maps and legends of gold and movies and airplanes and the history of water and land combines: find pattern in a seeming chaos of desire. Erskine Summerland was in my imaginary California, flying a plane from San Simeon to Tehachepi and straight into a mountain. Quintana, of Chinatown, lost to fire and water.  I saw Augusta, just the other day, digging in her own back yard the morning after her father was buried, certain he had left a stash of gold coins under the eucalyptus grove above Hollywood Boulevard. . . .

And you, too, were there.   All of us at the interface between acceptance and passion. The western edge is a place where, as Joan Didion once wrote: "the mind is troubled by some buried but ineradicable suspicion that things had better work here, because here, beneath that immense bleached sky, is where we run out of continent."




Writing Califia

About the CD-ROM

Moments from Califia

Critic's Circle--Critics on Califia

For Curious Readers

Historical References in Califia