I’ve been writing quite a bit recently about practice as part of some preparation for a seminar I’m giving in Wolverhampton and Roehampton in March. Part of that writing (and reading) has been about questioning how useful the word is given its ubiquity in dance and performance. More on that soon, but for now here are some snippets from things I’ve been collecting.
When I’m in writing mode for a novel, I get up at four a.m. and work for five to six hours. In the afternoon, I run for ten kilometers or swim for fifteen hundred meters (or do both), then I read a bit and listen to some music. I go to bed at nine p.m. I keep to this routine every day without variation. The repetition itself becomes the important thing; it’s a form of mesmerism. I mesmerize myself to reach a deeper state of mind. But to hold to such repetition for so long—six months to a year—requires a good amount of mental and physical strength. In that sense, writing a long novel is like survival training. Physical strength is as necessary as artistic sensitivity.
What does practice look like for you?
Practice is writing even when you don’t have something to write.
Avoid Flow. Do What Does Not Come Easy.