Writers' Lounge

Daily Routines of Famous Writers

All of us are often guilty of showing interest in the lives of other people, especially celebrities. Sometimes we idolize them, and sometimes we look up to them, but most of the time we’re merely intrigued by their daily lives and daily routines. If you are an avid book reader, chances are that you are more interested in a famous writer than a movie star or a musician. The same could be said about new authors who are looking up to their favorite writer and looking to be inspired by them. We have all heard many stories about writers in the past, who have produced their best work while being drunk or after constant gambling. What exactly are some of the routines that famous artists do on a daily basis?

Stephen King

Stephen King tends to keep the things simple and his only routine is consistency. As a part of his routine, he tries to write six pages a day. He wakes up around 8:00, has a cup of tea and starts working. In one interview, he explained that sometimes life got in the way during the time he usually used for working and that he had to get up and pause his work, but even that didn’t stop him from finishing the planned number of pages.

J. K. Rowling

Joanne doesn’t have a routine she tends to follow. She explains that she is often busy and has a lifestyle that doesn’t allow her to have a set schedule. Instead, she tries to write as much as she can whenever she can and wherever she can. Did you know that she wrote down the Hogwarts’ houses names on a sick big on an airplane?

Maya Angelou

Despite living in a house, Maya Angelou kept a hotel room where she did all her work. She would wake up early in the morning, share a cup of coffee with her husband and go to the hotel room to write, undistracted. Angelou explained her routine as lonely and marvelous. Once finished with her writing, she would head home and enjoy the rest of her “normal” life with her husband.

Haruki Murakami

Murakami’s daily routine seems more of an athlete’s training than of a writer’s routine. Namely, Murakami would wake up around 4:00 in the morning every day without exception, go for a long 10-kilometer run or swim for a kilometer and a half. Sometimes, he would even do both activities. He believes that writing a novel is like a survival training where a person needs both physical training and artistic sensitivity.

W. H. Auden

1948 Pulitzer Prize winner believed that routine is a sign ambition and executed his daily tasks with military precision and punctuality. He was like a modern stoic that strived to discipline his time as it was the only way to discipline his passion. Auden worked best from 7:00 to 11:30 in the morning and spent the rest of his day as every other person would – by having dinner and wine with his friends and his guests.

Simone de Beauvoir

French writer, philosopher and intellectual had a slightly different and more laid-back approach to her writing. She would first have her tea and then work from 10:00 to 01:00 in the afternoon. Afterwards, Simone would meet her friends and enjoy some time off, only to continue working later, around 5:00 in the afternoon. She explained that taking a break from work was never an issue as she could always pick up where she had left off.