the quiet life of a writer yak yak yak


I was an English major back in college. From the age of nineteen, for over a decade I devoured books. Thousands of them. And I always liked hearing the true-life stories about the authors who penned them.
I remember well, hearing all about two of my favorite writers, Hemingway and Graham Greene.
Though their books were very different from each other’s, their daily routines were quite similar, so I heard.
Basically, they’d live somewhere cheap, quiet and relatively conducive to getting a lot of writing done. The Florida Keys and Cuba in Hemingway’s case, the South of France in Greene’s.
They’d get up early each morning, then write diligently till noon.
Then they’d head for their local café, drink gallons of booze for hours on end, and stagger home late at night.
Then they’d do the same thing the next day. And the next. And the next. For years on end. Women came and went, friends came and went, children came and went, money and fame came and went, but the daily writing-booze combo remained the great constant.
I’m not sure I like the idea of staggering home drunk every night, but as somebody who likes to write, likes his beer, and likes the simple life, I can’t say I find their overall Modus Operandi unappealing.
I guess I’m currently finding my own equivalent here in Alpine, Texas, minus the copious amount of booze. In the back of my mind, I know one of the main reasons I worked so hard these last few years, is because I knew that one day this is exactly what I’d want to end up doing, far away from the big city, the madding crowd. And so here I am.

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Hugh MacLeod is a genius.  Genius.

Seth Godin
Best Selling Author

His work acknowledges the absurdity of workaday life, while also encouraging employees to respond with passion, creativity, and non-conformity...   MacLeod’s work is undeniably an improvement over the office schlock of yore. At its best, it’s more honest, and more cognizant of the entrepreneurial psyche, while still retaining some idealism.

The New Republic
Lydia Depillis

Last year my State of the College address was 76 slides loaded with data. This year it was 14 cartoons that were substantially more memorable.

Len Schlesinger
Former President, Babson College

"There are only two daily newsletters that I look forward to opening and reading every time they show up to my inbox: Seth Godin's and gapingvoid."

Tony Hsieh
CEO, Zappos

In moments of indecision I glance at the wall [to Hugh's work] for guidance.

Brian Clark
  • Seth Godin
  • The New Republic
  • Len Schlesinger
  • Tony Hsieh
  • Brian Clark