The daily rhythms of history’s greatest figures have been revealed.

NEXT time your alarm goes off first thing in the morning, maybe it’s not time to put on your slippers and shuffle off to the breakfast table, before jumping into the shower and heading off to work surrounded by the eerie silence that befalls public transport first thing in the morning.

Why not walk in the same footsteps of Winston Churchill, sipping on a whiskey at 11:00 am, followed by a big and boozy lunch, and tucking into another whiskey at 5:00 pm. If that’s not your, ah, cup of tea – or in fact you do fancy a cuppa of a morning, how about doing as Stephen King does: drinking tea or glass of water and sitting down at the same desk to commence writing each day sometime between 8-8:30 am.

Others, such as author Haruki Murakami, prefer to be up at 4:00 am and getting to work straight away for 5-6 hours, before rounding the day off with a 10 km run, or 1,500 m swim.

Up until recently, all this and more has been compiled at the Daily Routines blog, with a book recently replacing the website and making itself comfortable on bookshelves, entitled Daily Rituals: How Artists Work. Documenting the daily rhythms of the likes of Vladimir Nabokov, Benjamin Franklin, Jasper Johns, Franz Kafka and Ingmar Bergman, take solace in your own eccentricities with the fact that some of history’s greatest names aren’t bothered to mow the lawn or take the day off work to attend their wedding day. Or just get on with it and dance to the rhythm of your own drum, the way you always have.


James O’Sullivan