Since Listen to the Echoes was released a little over a month ago, many people have asked about the full-page photographs at the front of each chapter in the book. Here’s the story. Ray Bradbury is a pack-rat. A borderline hoarder. The man saves everything. His west Los Angeles home is museum of his life. Everything is there, from the many autographs he collected as a teenager in Hollywood; to the shelves and shelves of books gathered over a lifetime; to rooms overrun by toys. There are matchbooks going back to the 1940s. Political buttons for candidates he supported in the 1950s. Fan letters written to him throughout his career. Original, hand painted animation cels from a range of classic Disney films, given to Bradbury personally by Walt Disney himself. It’s all in the house.
I have asked Bradbury a few times, “Why do you hold on to everything?”
The answer: “Because all of these things around me are my metaphors.”