I can’t advocate excessive drinking as a tool for creativity. I guess I can’t advocate routine heavy drinking in general. In this FastCompany article, Jessica Grose shares some of Mason Currey’s findings on the habits of the super-creative, and it looks like the booze makes quite a showing.
For the past ten years or so, writing has been part of my work, either formally or informally. And I find that I’m either in the right “head space” or not. When I am, I’m on fire. Otherwise, the attention I should focus on writing is diverted: all I can think about is how to get myself in my writerly place. For me, it’s not so much that I need a ritual it’s that I need to engage a medium for mental manipulation. I need to find the activity that gets me to that place.
My triggers are control and distraction. Having a pristine writing environment often gives me that feeling of control so house-cleaning (or desk-cleaning) can sometimes give me that little hit I need to start writing. And I find that the best cure for distraction is to go and do something else entirely –something that requires focus– and come back to the writing later. Needless to say, I generally have a very clean home.
And looking at some of the rituals of the most creative writers, I am pretty certain I don’t have the constitution for their lifestyle. I’m also pretty sure I’d ask them to wash up before I shake their hand.