October 21, 2010


  1. Interesting post. It is commendable that these guys were solely dedicated to their work, yet they must have been lonely fellows.

    I have a couple of friends who went farther into their musical careers than I did and sometimes that sounds appealing yet when I was single (and more so even now with a family) it never occured to me that a person can't do both, be dedicated to artistic ventures while having a family and a job and whatnot. It seems like there is a balance to be had and it makes for a richer life, in my opinion. Of course, this kind of thing is subjective so I am not making any statement about "how life should be lived".

    I think that if you investigated a little more you'd find that there are many great writers (artists in general) that were dedicated to both art and to family. They did and do exist.


  2. Well, to be fair, out of the 4 authors I have read in this book, only Flaubert dedicated himself solely to writing. And yes, he was fairly lonely.

    Thoreau had a lot of visitors throughout his writing life. Dickens and Clemens both did a lot of other things during their writing careers.

    I had the same experience with my musical career. I had a couple friends that were really talented and didn't have to practice nearly as much as I would to be as good as them. And then when I started to focus on working and making a living, I quit doing any music because I didn't realize that I could actually balance both, if I wanted to.

    I will admit that a lot of writers seem to take things to the extreme, hence a lot of the drug and alcohol addictions, but I think you are right, with more investigation, I could probably find just as many that have a good art/life balance.