Friday, November 25, 2011

Writer's Daily Routines

On his fascinating blog Daily Routines, Mason Currey collects schedules once kept by notable writers, artists and thinkers. Here are a few samples:

Immanuel Kant

Wake at 5am. Drink one or two cups weak tea, smoke pipe, meditate. Prepare lectures and books until 7am. Lecture 7 - 11 am. Write until the lunch. Walk. Spend rest of afternoon with friend. Light work and reading.

Franz Kafka

Work at office 8.30 am - 2.30 pm. Lunch until 3.30 pm. Sleep until 7.30 pm. Exercise. Family dinner. At 11 pm, begin work, letter- and diary- writing "until one, two, or three o'clock", followed by "every imaginable effort to go to sleep".

Haruki Murakami

Wake at 4 am. Work for five to six hours. Run for 10km or swim for 1,500 miles (or both). Read, listen to music. In bed at 9 pm.

P. G. Wodehouse

Wake at 7.30 am. Perform calisthenics. Breakfast with a "breakfast book" (perhaps a mystery). First pipe of the day. Short walk with dogs. Work 9 am - 1 pm. Lunch at 1. Walk. Soap opera. Tea with wife. Nap. Bath. More work. Cocktail. Sun parlour. Dinner. Reading, occasional game of bridge.

Charles Darwin

Wake at 7 am. Breakfast at 7.45 am. Work 8 - 9.30 am. Letters until 10.30 am. Work 10.30 - 12. Walk. Lunch at 12.45 pm. Read The Times. Answer letters. Rest, smoke. Listen to light literature read by wife. Walk. Work. Rest. Listen to reading aloud again at 6. Light high tea at 7.30. Games of backgammon if no guests present. Read, listen to piano. In bed by 10.30 pm.

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