I read a story – a collection of paragraphs really – where some very talented writers talked about their pre-writing rituals. It was depressing as hell. Okay, some of them were intentionally funny. But it’s safe to say that we writers, as a species, are bat crap crazy. We have very little idea how to write books. We just know that occasionally we manage it, and therefore, it is necessary to do many superstitious rituals just in case they had anything to do with our success.
You never know. More than one tablespoon of honey in our yogurt could mean kissing the bestseller list goodbye. Drink more or less than exactly two cups of water? You might as well give it all up and become an electrician.
Because one of my greatest successes in life is maintaining the illusion than I am less nuts than I am, I am happy to report that my only writing ritual is peppermint tea. I drink it while I work, so I keep a stash in my desk. Because, in my family, tea is served sweet, I’ll take two packets of a likely carcinogenic, sugar-like chemical, please. And just so we’re clear, that’s per cup not per pot.
But in case I sound too sane, I’ll admit here that I feel weird calling it “tea.” It’s nothing more than dried peppermint leaves, and peppermint isn’t a member of the Theaceae family. So, you know, not actually tea.
Peppermint is a member of the Labiatae family.
Along with basil.
Also rosemary, sage, oregano and bee balm.
Not at all like tea really. Not even tea adjacent.
Bat crap crazy.