Hidden beneath every sentence of your favourite book lies the author’s inspiration and creative machinery. Many writers rely on a writing routine to keep them working at an optimal level. Psychologically, writing routines can provide a sense of comfort and familiarity which helps to establish a fertile writing mind. There is a sense of taking charge of the process, which can make beginning easier.
Each writer’s routine can be as unique as the writer. Flannery O’ Connor kept her two hours of writing each day as productive as possible by facing her wood dresser to prevent distraction. Edith Wharton, in contrast, needed to face a window in order to write. Maya Angelou wrote in a rented hotel room which had no decorations or paintings, and even cancelled housekeeping, all to avert distraction. Karl Marx wrote at night, while smoking, and visited the British Museum Reading Room during the day for inspiration. Virginia Woolf liked to wake up at the same time every morning, eat breakfast with her husband, and then start to write at 9:30am.