This episode first appeared on Craft Your Content. You can listen to more episodes of Writers’ Rough Drafts at craftyourcontent.com/podcast.
Mason Currey is a writer, editor, and author living in Los Angeles. His work has appeared in publications like The New York Times and Slate, and before he took to writing full-time, he worked in journalism and magazines, working his way up from Assistant to the Publisher to Managing Editor at Metropolis magazine, then working as the Executive Editor at Printmagazine and Senior Editor at Core77.
A writer at heart, he found himself wanting to sit down and work on the book he wanted to write, only to hit major writer’s block—if he was even able to make time with that busy schedule. This led him to start seeking out the habits and rituals of other prominent creatives, seeing if he could find inspiration for his own project. As he read more, he realized that others might be interested in such material, and began compiling and curating some of the most fascinating (and frankly mundane) routines that led to some of the greatest pieces of art and literature in his first book, Daily Rituals: How Artists Work.
With famous fans ranging from Lena Dunham to Tim Ferriss, my favorite review of the book comes from The Literary Review, stating that it is “a delightful book, full of quirks and oddities.” Realizing after publication that the book featured a predominantly male subject demographic, he set about researching famous women’s daily rituals soon after, and his newest book Daily Rituals: Women at Work comes out today—in March 2019 for those not listening on March 5!
What You’ll Learn About Writing This Week:
- What it takes to know yourself and what works for you—even if the advice and process of “the greats” is the exact opposite
- How to let your subjects speak for themselves and showcase their voices
- Finding the tension between forcing your creativity but not forcing the end result
- How procrastinating on some projects can lead you to be inspired to pursue what you’re actually passionate about
- Being a creative doesn’t always have to be glamorous
- The one piece of clothing that Mason wears to get into his writing groove
Mentioned in This Episode (Links and Resources!):
- Crash course in publishing/Summer 2019 program at Columbia University
- Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird (the chapter called “Shitty First Drafts”)
- Daily Rituals: How Artists Work
- Daily Rituals: Women at Work
You Can Find More of Mason and His Writing On:
Tweetable Quotes From This Episode:
- “I thought that writers sit alone in their room and crank this work of brilliance out, but that’s actually really difficult to do right out of college.” – @masoncurrey #WritersRoughDrafts
- “Really try to let your subjects speak for themselves. Try to get their voice in there.” – @masoncurrey #WritersRoughDrafts
- “In reality, most writers have pretty regular and mundane work habits.” – @masoncurrey #WritersRoughDrafts
- “If you’re not having a good time, or if you’re conflicted about it, or you’re bored by it, there’s no way to hide that—it’ll show in the writing in the end.” – @masoncurrey #WritersRoughDrafts
Thanks to our Season 4 sponsor: Coworker.com