Eating for Art's Sake

"Hunger is good discipline and you learn from it" 
 - Ernest Hemingway,  A Moveable Feast

Does hunger feed your creative Muse?  Famous artists starve whilst pursuing the dream, best-selling novelists write in their birthday suits, and fanatical climbers sleep in hammocks precariously secured to cliff-tops.  All to satisfy their passion, that hunger which drives them to chase their dreams.  Myself, I love good food and wine, I get glassy-eyed over a fabulous supper and dream about it for weeks afterwards and rave about to everyone who crosses my path.  And, writing seems much-more-muchier on a full stomach.  So, do we really need to starve for our art, and is hunger-induced prose infinitely better than the literary musings of a fully-lined belly?

I pondered this question whilst sitting in a cigar and whiskey bar, dining on oysters, the most sublime truffle burger, and champagne.  I can unequivocally say that sometimes excess does improve the grey cells, and people are happier when indulging.  And at the risk of watching my Inner Bohemian throw herself on the floor in a weeping mess, I'll admit something else... I love all things vintage but physical starvation for creative juices is not a belief I follow.  

These days I think our artistic hunger comes from the deep recesses of our grey matter versus our bellies.  I hanker to finish my book, I need to write every day, I must have coffee and hot chocolate...and if I don't have champagne - I will die.  See, all these things are necessary evils in my publishing journey, and I am always hungry...and there's irony in this post.  Once I do start writing, I can't stop... I forget to eat and drink, I forget where I am, who I am...and sometimes I even forget to dress.

How about you?  Do you suffer for your creative Muse?

My Bohemian Muse...inconsolable in fire engine red.
She's so dramatic sometimes...
Photo courtesy via weheartit.


  1. Well now I know what you will bring with you on your publishing journey-- awesome! (I just posted about this.) I definitely want to sit by you.

  2. Really though provoking. I hope that none of your readers are starving. I know that I'm always within walking distance of food!

  3. I totally get this post. My muse is a wicked witch.

  4. I've just come through three VERY lean years. Seriously -- I even had to give up my favourite conditioner, which is no mean thing when you have platinum tresses. To a degree, not being comfortable does help drive you, but it can also be very stressful (on both hair and soul!).

  5. Oh, I suffer, all right - I suffer from extra pounds around my middle because I CANNOT give up my chocolate!

  6. Oh I love this! At my present age there's nothing I enjoy more than an array of tapas and nice glass or wine and my laptop for writing or a good book. Doesn't get any better ... unless I get a shopping trip afterwards. lol

  7. In my favorite show (you know the one) the main character is thrust into his "salad days"... his "starving artist days". The character who says this is implying that writers need to be a physically hungry because it makes them better writers- which is because the writers of the show had Hemingway as their icon. But I'm with you. I'd rather die than not have a few nice things (in fact I would have rather have a bit more!!!). Like champers! In fact, time for more! *clink, clink*.

  8. Haha, I always have to eat or drink something (even if it's just water) when I write. Otherwise I'll forget to eat! And also, I believe chocolate is wonderful food for my muse. :)

  9. My muse today is a box of sugar cookies with sprinkles. ;-)

  10. I always have to take food down into the dungeon with me when I go to eat, as well as water and some sort of additional drink (tea, soda, what have you). I get so caught up in the writing that if the food and such aren't already sitting there, I'll never go up to get it. I like to have something crunchy to nosh on, too. Don't ask me why, I just do.

    Tina @ Life is Good
    and I are joining forces in another challenge. We're going to visit and comment at each of the participants, starting with the reflections post. We hope you'll join us!

    Shannon @ The Warrior Muse

  11. Yes!!!
    I become much too content and lazy. I do my best work, especially writing, when I'm in need of something. If I'm sad, I can write like a demon.


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