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12 Books in 12 Months

writing books and blogging about it

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balzac

An Age Old Question, Answered

Another question from @Glempy, aka The Rogue Verbumancer.

I think I’ve probably saved the biggest and most important question until last. It’s a divisive question that splits the opinions of many. I’ve seen it cause full on brawls; I’ve seen it ruin friendships and shake empires. There is without doubt no single question that carries such great weight, especially in the arena of writing. So:

Tea?

Or Coffee?

What is your chosen fuel when it comes to writing?

Ah, the age old question.

I have to come down on the side of tea, although I do have a coffee first thing.  And I try to drink loads of water when I’m working as well, mainly just due to a vague notion that it’s probably a good thing to do.  But plain old breakfast tea with a bit of milk is very much the beverage of choice for me.

I came across an article a while ago which I linked to in a previous post, about the different rituals of various authors.  It claims that Balzac drank between 50 and 300 cups of coffee a day, which seems incredible.  Maybe I’ll try following his example when I write my shockingly realistic book about the French Revolution…

image from http://anicecupof.com/

Writing Routines

Just read an article on different authors’ writing routines, and was thinking it might be quite fun to try them all across the year to see whether they work for me.  The obsessive routines of C.S.Lewis and Toni Morrison would undoubtedly do wonders for my productivity, but I wonder whether I would come to associate writing with all that I hate in life (very early mornings, not being able to do anything spontaneous, and suchlike).

Some might prove more difficult than others, though – will need to procure a dog from somewhere for Wordsworth‘s technique, and I’m not sure how well George Sand‘s 2 year affair strategy would go down with my partner…  But it would be interesting to see how standing up to write would affect my productivity, as per Philip Roth, or how my body would react to a minimum 50 cups of coffee a day like Balzac.

AD 39, June 10th

Today is the first anniversary of Drusilla’s death.

It’s clear to everyone that I need cheering up, so to that end I have commissioned a statue of myself.  It shall be like me in height, appearance – every respect, in fact.  But instead of marble or bronze, he shall be cast in purest gold.  Perhaps jeweled eyes, although I think that might just look a bit strange.  And every day he shall be arrayed in the exact attire that I have chosen to wear that day.  I will need to employ someone whose specific task that will be.

Why?  Because I can.  I am the emperor of Rome, after all.

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