I have spent nearly 12 hours today in the yard: weeding, trimming, cleaning up, planting a few marigolds for their lively color. Kept books outside for reading during my breaks, which became more and more frequent as my neck began bothering me. Nevertheless, I've accomplished a great deal and have two wheelbarrows full of junk for the trash people tomorrow. Old plastic pots, old stakes, tree trimmings, weeds. Lots and lots of weeds.
Turned again to The Habit of Being and during my breaks indulged in more letters. O'Connor received many "fan" letters:
to a man who had not read her stories: "[he] doesn't really see how I can say a good man is hard to find. he is an industrial engineer, likes to play bridge, is the active type, 31 years old, single etc. etc. I wrote Mr. Semple that I didn't think I'd like him a bit but he would be crazy about me as I had seven gold teeth and weighed 250 pounds." ("A Good Man Is Hard to Find" is one of her short stories)
on religion: "I believe that there are many rough beasts slouching toward Bethelem to be born and that I have reported the progress of a few of them, and when I see these stories described as horror stories I am always amused because the reviewer always has hold of the wrong horror."
"Dogma can in no way limit a limitless God.....For me a dogma is only a gateway to contemplation and is an intrument of freedom and not of restriction."
Her religion and the Catholic Church were paramount to O'Connor so reading some of her thoughts in the form of nonfiction is revealing.