Julia Cameron is known for helping readers tap into their creativity to improve every aspect of their lives. She is the best-selling author of more than 40 books, most notably The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity (which has sold over four million copies since 1992) and her newest title, The Listening Path: The Creative Art of Attention. Here, she shares the routine that keeps her career going strong year after year.
In The Artist’s Way, you recommend starting every day by writing three pages longhand. Is this something you still do yourself?
Yes, I still do “Morning Pages.” They are a practice I would not go without. I’ve been doing them for over three decades, and I rely on them to guide me.
Do you have a certain kind of pen and notebook you prefer?
I use a uni-ball 207 bold pen. I like it because it is fast writing. As for paper, I recommend lined, spiral-bound, 8.5” x 11” journals.
When you are doing non-Morning-Pages writing, do you prefer longhand or typing?
I prefer writing longhand—I find the flow of ideas comes more readily when I put my pen to the page.
How many hours a day do you devote to writing?
I have no set time beyond the Morning Pages. Later in the day, I will get the “itch” to write, and that amount of time varies project to project.
Describe your preferred writing space.
I write on a loveseat in my living room, facing a view of the [Santa Fe, NM] mountains.
Do you listen to music or keep on some other background noise while writing or do you prefer silence?
I prefer silence. Music distracts me from the flow of ideas.
Are you alone when you write or are there people or pets around?
I live and write alone. My little dog Lily, a Westie, knows when I am not to be disturbed.
What do you like to wear when you write?
I go straight from the bed to the page, so I write wearing comfortable pajamas.
Have you adopted any new creative habits during quarantine?
I have been writing little musical ditties using a toy piano. I have also enjoyed writing poetry detailing my reactions to the day. I find that the discipline of rhyming impacts me like truth serum. I plan to continue both practices once we are again safe and free.
By Emily Rems
This article originally appeared in the Spring 2021 print edition of BUST Magazine. Subscribe today!
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