Weird writers…

Well, we’re all a bit weird aren’t we, but some seem to have explored new levels of eccentricity. Jack Milgram has put together another great infographic, this time detailing the idiosyncrasies of famous authors.

It’s one of those long scrolly ones, so click on the pic below to see it in all its glory:

quirks

Personally, I prefer to write with a fountain pen when getting down ideas, my notebooks are all Moleskines, and if I need to be really creative, I like a couple of drinks (no more!) to lubricate the cogs in my head.

This is as quirky as I get!

Poetry in motion…

If found this gem on Amazon Video last evening: Paterson. It’s the story of a quiet guy, Paterson (Adam Driver) who lives with his girlfriend Laura (Golshifteh Farahani) and her dog, and drives a bus for a living. He’s also a poet, carrying a notebook around with him and composing verses in his head as he observes the passengers and other people that he encounters.

Knowing Jim Jarmusch’s work (Broken Flowers, Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai, Coffee and Cigarettes) I expected something quirky and inventive, but I didn’t expect it to be so moving and inspiring. Granted that by the end of the movie, you’ll not know whether you want to kill the girlfriend first, or the dog, this was still a charming and life-affirming way to spend a couple of hours.

According to iMDb, the poetry in the film was written by Ron Padgett, with whom I was not familiar, and whose works I now intend to seek out.

Writing in coffee shops…

It turns out that people on their MacBooks in coffee shops are doing exactly what you think they are doing: What are people really working on in coffee shops?

OK, so it was in Dalston (for those outside London, it’s basically hipster central!) but there were no real surprises. Everyone is doing something ‘creative’, from trying to find a novel to go with the title of their novel, to writing haikus (is this real I ask, but then decide that it’s too real not to be).

Part of me thinks ‘Good on them for doing something artistic with their time!’ But this is admittedly a very, very small part of me. The rest screams ‘Twat!’ in the highest register possible in my tortured internal voice. I can do notebook-in-a-pub myself, but laptop-in-a-coffee-shop is just going too far. I can’t do it, even at my most pregnant with ideas; it just has to go into the notebook or the notes app on my phone (another reason not to get rid of it).

Maybe my cynicism is misplaced and East End coffee shops really are quiet generators of innovation and creativity. More than likely though, most of this crowd are doing what most people do: they desperately want to get that book written, but there are too many distractions to do anything substantive about it. But getting the laptop out and sitting in front of it is at least part of the battle: the real trick is to keep writing…