Yesterday I admitted to a fellow blogger that because of arthritis in my hands I haven’t made homemade bread for many years… at least, not the mix-and-knead-by-hand version. I do, however, have a bread-making machine so I often wake up in the morning to that heady fresh-from-the-oven smell. This morning’s olfactory treat came in the form of cinnamon fruit bread.
The starving artist in the garret is an image many of us can relate to, if only because escaping to a secluded locale for uninterrupted writing time appeals. Maybe the starving part doesn’t, since more often than not we joke about our need for sustenance… for chocolate, pots of tea or grande lattes, Diet Coke or glasses of wine.
We’re human, so of course we need food. But when I’m on a writing binge I hate stopping long enough to create a full meal. At those times, if my dear, considerate husband is around, he usually does the cooking. If he’s away, I survive on bread and peanut butter or bowls of popcorn. It’s not ideal but at least it keeps the growlies at bay.
If it’s possible to plan ahead (oh, sure… how good are you at predicting when the muse will appear?) there are comfort foods and other meals that I find quick to prepare and reheat, such as macaroni and cheese – I love macaroni and cheese – or stew – that’s my husband’s favourite – or in the summer (the what? Will it ever be summer again?) potato salad and cold meats are easy. I also like having lots of fresh veggies prepared in the fridge, ready for snacking. Yes, I actually like raw vegetables.
A writer’s life isn’t conducive to good eating and fitness habits. We sit on our butts for hours at a time, reluctant to leave our characters in the midst of a story for anything so mundane as eating and exercising. But we owe it to ourselves and our families – and perhaps to good writing itself – to stay healthy. God also reminds us that our bodies are his temple. That puts a whole new perspective on why we should take care of it!
Be honest now. How do your eating and fitness habits fare during extensive stretches of writing? What’s your favourite ‘writing meal’?
Do you not know that your body is the temple (the very sanctuary) of the Holy Spirit who lives within you, whom you have received [as a gift] from God? You are not your own. [I Corinthians 6:19 – Amplified Bible]