Saturday, 28 May 2011

Food for thought

Food for Thought

Written in 1833 by Balzac (Honore De
Balzac) to his friend Zulma Carraud
during one of his most prolific periods.

“I must tell you that I am submerged in
excessive labour. The mechanics of my
life have altered. I go to bed at six or
seven in the evening, like the hens. I am
awakened at one o’clock in the morning
and work till eight. At eight I sleep for an
hour and a half. Then I have something
light to eat, and a cup of black coffee,
and harness my wagon until four. I
receive callers, I take a bath or I go out,
and after dinner I go back to bed. I have
to live like this for months on end if I am
not to be overwhelmed by my


  1. It sounds familiar - the hermit's life when we are writing - the obsessive routines, rituals etc. We know if we want to manage the rest of our life we have to bed down early, rise early and just get on with it, day after day, month after month. Mad? Probably!! But then, look at Balzac's marvellous work.. And hope lives on.

  2. You're dead right, B, all we have to do is check out the man's literary magic to see how worthwhile such sacrifice is. The proof is in the pudding.