In a recent survey we conducted, we asked authors what beverage helped them get their creative juices flowing. The results weren’t too far off from what we expected; writers are such creatures of habit.
Coffee and Tea
Hot and soothing. Cold and Refreshing. Sweetened or unsweetened. These two beverages can be presented in countless ways, each catering to the unique taste buds of the individual writer. Filled with just enough caffeine to get you going – but not enough to have your heart fluttering like a hummingbird’s – coffee and tea are the staple of any author’s diet. From coffee and tea salons in the 1700’s with their intelligentsia and political philosophers to the beat-era slam poetry sessions of the late 1900’s, coffee and tea have lent their influence to writers the world over. It’s no surprise that, when writing, most authors turn to one of these two juggernauts.
Coming in a distant second is wine, receiving 10% of the vote. Writing is dangerous work. In each and every sentence, authors are baring their soul to the world and allowing the world to hurl its criticism at them. It’s tougher than public speaking, because once written your words are forever there. Sometimes writing takes a little liquid courage, something to take the edge off and lower the inhibitions. Wine is a perfect late-night helper those burning the midnight oil. Unlike coffee and tea, it won’t keep you up; in fact, it will help you fall asleep before you have a chance to go back and re-read what you’ve written, preventing the common “ctrl+a delete” disease that afflicts so many authors.
They are a modern phenomenon, providing motivation and get-up-and-go to millenials everywhere. Most contain ingredients we can’t even pronounce, but pronunciation isn’t important when the results fill you with an insatiable drive to complete whatever task is at hand. Though they only received 8% of the vote, Energy Drinks are still “new” in the world of beverages. We don’t doubt that over the next several years more authors will turn to them, seeking an ally in the constant battle against the deadline.
They say that to write well, you need to write what you know. Tragically, for many writers, much of their inspiration comes from their lives. When reading a scene that is visceral and real, one that evokes strong emotions in you, it is very likely that that scene was stolen out of the life of the person writing it. Writing can be a way to release your inner demons, and liquor can be a way to forget them. Typically when we think of liquor and writing, we think of those tortured artists whose works transcend the ages. Poe. Hemingway. Fitzgerald. Faulkner. A well written story is one that makes the reader question, one that makes the reader find a deeper meaning, whatever it may be. Nothing makes you contemplative like liquor, though there is a fine line between contemplation and inebriation.
Honorable Mention: Water
During our survey, we received several comments from voters saying their drink of choice was water. We had considered putting it on the poll, but figured it was too common and ordinary to spark much of a response. We were wrong. Water is the liquid of life, and it makes sense that authors would turn to the clean simplicity of it as they wrote. After all, they are creating life with each word they write. For an act as pure as that of creation, many need a beverage just as pure.