"Technique alone is never enough. You have to have passion. Technique alone is just an embroidered potholder."
Writing is an art and it does need a lot of inspiration and creativity. All of us have at least one thing that inspires us to do more and better. And, we need it the most while overcoming a writer's block.
Don't worry, it's not only you, because all the famous writers have also experienced it. No doubt, these geniuses had a lot of talent and the gift of playing with words. But, they also had some secret ways which added a magical touch to their talent. Some of the writers adopted some very weird habits to do better!
In the following sections, we enlist some common traits or habits shared by writers, and then a few bizarre habits of some great writers.
Truman Capote, an American author and playwright, took the next step by publicly calling himself a "completely horizontal author". Who would have thought that the comfort of our bed could be used in such a way?
Famous people like Charles Dickens, Ernest Hemingway, Philip Roth, Lewis Carroll, and Virginia Woolf are some of them. It is also proven that this technique has health benefits. So all the health-freak writers out there could opt for this.
✦ Alexandre Dumas, the French author of "The Three Musketeers" was very particular about the color of his page. The colors were all fixed like pink for non-fiction, blue for fiction novels, and yellow for his poetry.
✦ Virginia Woolf also used different-colored inks, especially green, blue, and purple. Purple was her favorite but it was used only for writing letters.
It resulted in him keeping a whiskey bottle within reach, all the time. Jack Daniels and Mint Julep were his favorite and you may see them on his grave.
✦ It's impossible to not think of Stephen King when talking about drinking. He thought that he would lose his creativity spark because of sobriety. His drinking was so that he didn't even remember writing Cujo.
✦ Also, we have to mention Oscar Wilde. His witty one-liners about alcohol have floored his readers.
Some Notable Mentions
✦ Dan Brown, the author of the best-seller Da Vinci Code, hangs upside down for writer's block. He admits that this helps him relax and concentrate better. Also, he keeps an hourglass on his desk as a reminder to do stretches, push-ups, and sit-ups every hour.
✦ Francine Prose, author of Blue Angel, thinks that facing a wall is the best way to focus on writing. She thinks that there is minimal distraction in that and hence helps a lot.
✦ Victor Hugo has taken writing to another level. When he had stringent deadlines, he instructed his attendant to take away all his clothes. This was done so that he won't leave the house and would focus only on writing. Even in the coldest of weather, he was only left with a blanket to cover himself. Such dedication!
✦ Demosthenes, a Greek writer, shaved half his head to look idiotic. It only meant that he would have to stay home until his hair grows back. Writing was a better option than getting ridiculed by people.
✦ Vladimir Nabokov, this man loved index cards. All his novels were written on handy 3 x 5 inch cards, which were always kept in slim boxes. He practiced this method because he would always get the freedom of re-arranging the sequence of the scenes anyhow, later.
✦ James Joyce was almost blind because of complications in his childhood myopia. He always wore a white coat, and wrote with crayons while lying on his stomach in bed. The crayons helped him understand what he's writing and the white coat helped in reflecting more light.
✦ Eudora Welty had this habit of pinning all her stories to the wall. She used a paste and put the stories in a long line. If the walls weren't enough, she used the bed and the table too.
✦ Mary Shelley was a person who listened to her pet snake about when to stop working. She had a 23-foot long boa constrictor in her writing studio.
Whenever she started writing, she used to wrap the long snake around her shoulders. She kept writing until the snake started becoming restless, which meant squeezing her. The moment it started doing that, she stopped writing for the day.