Just finished reading Arnold Bennett’s How to live on 24 hours a day. Top tips from the last century for the struggling scriptmonger, yet to make a living from writing.
The gist of what Arnold’s saying is … set aside at least a few minutes every day … they add up. And he advocates getting up early in the morning. I’ve been rising at 5am every morning, writing for two and a half hours until breakfast and then on to the BBC for work that covers the (ridiculously large) mortgage. My first film script has been optioned, and I’m hoping the second script that I’ve just completed, will go the same way. And then those 5am starts will pay off.
You can read the book for free, here’s the link
I particularly like this little nugget:
“Rise an hour, an hour and a half, or even two hours earlier; and—if you must—retire earlier when you can. In the matter of exceeding programmes, you will accomplish as much in one morning hour as in two evening hours. “But,” you say, “I couldn’t begin without some food, and servants.” Surely, my dear sir, in an age when an excellent spirit-lamp (including a saucepan) can be bought for less than a shilling, you are not going to allow your highest welfare to depend upon the precarious immediate co-operation of a fellow creature! Instruct the fellow creature, whoever she may be, at night. Tell her to put a tray in a suitable position over night. On that tray two biscuits, a cup and saucer, a box of matches and a spirit-lamp; on the lamp, the saucepan; on the saucepan, the lid—but turned the wrong way up; on the reversed lid, the small teapot, containing a minute quantity of tea leaves. You will then have to strike a match—that is all. In three minutes the water boils, and you pour it into the teapot (which is already warm). In three more minutes the tea is infused. You can begin your day while drinking it. These details may seem trivial to the foolish, but to the thoughtful they will not seem trivial. The proper, wise balancing of one’s whole life may depend upon the feasibility of a cup of tea at an unusual hour.”
“Instruct the fellow creature” … WTF Arnold??