When I’m in writing mode for a novel, I get up at four a.m. and work for five to six hours. In the afternoon, I run for ten kilometers or swim for fifteen hundred meters (or do both), then I read a bit and listen to some music. I go to bed at nine p.m. I keep to this routine every day without variation. The repetition itself becomes the important thing; it’s a form of mesmerism. I mesmerize myself to reach a deeper state of mind. But to hold to such repetition for so long—six months to a year—requires a good amount of mental and physical strength. In that sense, writing a long novel is like survival training. Physical strength is as necessary as artistic sensitivity.
Zap! Not a lot different to what I’m aspiring to in 2017, albeit with less of his “good amount of mental and physical strength.” When you spot interconnectedness like this, it’s tempting to infer a cosmic sign, but in this case I’m not quite sure how to make use of Murakami’s advice . . .
(1978 Murakami photo from that Paris Review Interview.)