Which bad habit should I start?

I’m mostly joking when I ask this question, mostly. Someday I hope to become a great storyteller and there is no denying that many famous writers also had serious drug or alcohol addictions.  At this moment the only drug I abuse is caffeine but I don’t think it will alter my perspective enough to allow me to tap into my inner writing genius.  Just for funsies, I’d like to take a look at a few notable writers with serious drug issues.

Phillip K. Dick I have seen several movies based on his works but the first novel I read was “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?” This is one of those books that makes you wonder what kind of mind came up with this, and the answer to that question is, a mind altered by mescaline, LSD, PCP, etc. I’m sure the man had a great imagination without the drugs, by the reality altering effects of them certainly contributed.

Hunter S. Thompson A man known just as well for his fiendish drug use as his writing. According to the biography written by E. Jean Carroll his daily routine consisted of cocaine use, multiple glasses of scotch whiskey, cigarettes, weed, writing beginning at midnight followed by more cocaine, whiskey and other drugs throughout the night. I can’t believe he lived to be 68.

Stephen King was also a cocaine addict.  I don’t care for him but can’t deny he’s the name that everyone thinks of when considering the “horror” genre.  According to wikipedia he has 55 published novels and 200 short stories, and a bunch of really terrible movies based on his books with the exception of “The Shining” and “Carrie.” So yeah, for cocaine?

William S. Burroughs speaks candidly about heroine use in a 1977 interview. Interview . He admits that his experience with drugs helped him write “Junkie” as well as “Naked Lunch” and he hasn’t seen any negative health effects from the use but he does admit that he didn’t bathe much and as of the date of the interview was no longer addicted.

All this shows me is how difficult it really is to write a good story, which is something I already knew. My own methods of getting the creative juices flowing are much less interesting. They include the following:

  1. Drink a glass of beet juice
  2. Go for a jog
  3. Watch any episode of Doctor Who
  4. Have coffee with my favorite writer buddy and brainstorm

5 thoughts on “Which bad habit should I start?

  1. Aaron says:

    I read Stephen King’s IT last year, which he apparently wrote in the middle of his cocaine habit, and boy does it show. Especially towards the end. It’s hard to explain, but all of this weird stuff just starts to happen that has nothing to do with the rest of the book and, as a reader, I didn’t feel prepared for. But there is a lot of great stuff in there, too!


    • logangrey20 says:

      I agree. The creepy clown with razor teeth was scary but I don’t understand why the clown had to turn into a giant sewer bug. I think it was a giant bug… I read the book over 10 years ago and don’t remember much about it. I will say that I attempted to read his famous Dark Tower series and only got through the first book.


  2. Robert Crisp says:

    Your methods are much, much better than the other writers you mentioned. Stephen King did coke but identified much more as an alcoholic. Reading The Shining with that in mind (and given the fact that I’m a recovering alcoholic) was chilling.

    I know you’re joking, so I won’t go on and on about the myth that drugs and drinking make you more creative or productive. I’ll just say that about two months after I got sober, I started making better music and writing better poetry. More importantly, I had the focus, determination, and ability to sit down and do the less-than-exciting work of researching markets and submitting.


  3. ceshlan says:

    Yeah… the electric sheep thing turned into Blade Runner.
    I suppose mind altering drugs would definitely influence ones writing. Fortunately, I am not tempted to resort to extremes like that. As I write, I enjoy a little wine, but mostly green tea and play a movie soundtrack. And that would be my cocktail aiding the flow of creative juices.

    Julie, what’s happening with you? I haven’t seen you at the meet-ups lately. I am curious what trouble Haley is getting into next.

    Happy writing,



    • logangrey20 says:

      Yeah I just really don’t like Panera and it’s so far away for me. I feel like if I’m going to drive 30 minutes to go somewhere it should be somewhere worth going! So I was thinking of starting my own group and having it meet somewhere closer to me! But then I got lazy. So I’m sure I’ll be back soon. 🙂


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