Denis Johnson interviewed by David L. Ulin in the LA Times
"When I write, I don't think in terms of themes — or think in any terms, really," he explains. "I'm making what T.S. Eliot called 'quasi-musical decisions.' I'm just improvising and adapting, and in that case I suspect the story's course reflects the process of trying to make it. … I get in a teacup and start paddling across the little pond and say, 'In seven weeks, I'll land on Mars.' Five years later I'm still going in circles. When I reach the shore in spitting distance of where I started, it's a colossal triumph."