Monday, December 15, 2008

Daily Routines

Here's an interesting blog called Daily Routines that shows "how writers, artists, and other interesting people organize their days."

I liked how Joseph Campbell organized his days while he wasn't "working" for five years.

So during the years of the Depression I had arranged a schedule for myself. When you don’t have a job or anyone to tell you what to do, you’ve got to fix one for yourself. I divided the day into four four-hour periods, of which I would be reading in three of the four-hour periods, and free one of them.

By getting up at eight o’clock in the morning, by nine I could sit down to read. That meant I used the first hour to prepare my own breakfast and take care of the house and put things together in whatever shack I happened to be living in at the time. Then three hours of that first four-hour period went to reading.

Then came an hour break for lunch and another three-hour unit. And then comes the optional next section. It should normally be three hours of reading and then an hour out for dinner and then three hours free and an hour getting to bed so I’m in bed by twelve.

On the other hand, if I were invited out for cocktails or something like that, then I would put the work hour in the evening and the play hour in the afternoon.

It worked very well. I would get nine hours of sheer reading done a day. And this went on for five years straight.

This is how you learn! I ask my students to read short, easy essays and most don't want to. A graphic novel, a video, a hyperlinked blog, they all facilitate learning, but for the most part they can't hold a candle to a deeply layered poem or piece of prose.

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