I recently ordered her collection, We Tell Ourselves Stories in Order to Live, and I plan to finish that before embarking on either her newest memoir, Blue Nights, or The Year of Magical Thinking. So, basically, my fascination is brand new, and at this point I've only read a few of her pieces. But it only takes a sentence for Joan Didion to capture me completely. The opening of this New York Magazine article is dead-on:
Reading Joan Didion on any subject is like tiptoeing across a just-frozen pond filled with beautiful sharks. You look down and pray the ice will hold.
Here's an interview with Joan Didion from the 70s. She talks about how at the typewriter, she is in total control:
I don't have a typewriter, but I do have a shiny new Macbook Pro.