Why Are Writers Addicted to Coffee?

I can't scroll through any of my favorite writing-related Twitter feeds without finding 10 million posts about coffee. I'm guilty of posting a lot of these tweets myself, too. It seems like everyone who's serious about their writing career is also unashamed of their crippling coffee addiction. And it's definitely an ADDICTION--if I ever run out of coffee, I have an excruciating headache that leaves me less than functional. 

Sometimes I need 2-3 cups a day, or more if I have a LOT of work to do. Before I started drinking coffee, I'd pretty much never had a headache in my life. But now I'm completely, unquestionably addicted to caffeine, and my body would have to go through hell and back before I got over it.

I imagine a lot of my fellow writers are nodding along with this post.

But why?

Why, in addition to our passion for words, do we share a total dependence on ridiculous amounts of caffeine?

I have a few thoughts on that.

A few decades back, the stereotype was that all writers were addicted to cigarettes. Writer and chain-smoker went hand in hand. And before THAT, writers were supposedly all alcoholics. The correlation, in my opinion, is not between writing and coffee; it's between writing and ADDICTION.

To me, that makes perfect sense.

Writers, especially nowadays, almost NEED to have addictive personalities. I'm not addicted to just coffee--I'm also addicted to working. I'm a workaholic. I just get addicted to things easily, and I'm sure a lot of other writers could say the same.

Think about it. In my case, and a lot of other writers', I can't currently make my whole living on book sales alone. (Though, hopefully I will be able to one day!) So, I also teach writing, and I write articles, and I take on freelance editing gigs. Meanwhile, I'm constantly trying to increase book sales and build up buzz on my new books.

I try to update my Facebook multiple times a day, and my Twitter a few times an hour. Then I try to post something new on my blog every day, and get a few new videos on my YouTube channel a couple times a week.

That's on top of my actual writing ITSELF.

Sometimes, my Google calendar is filled with multicolored blocks from 6:30 am to midnight. And, to me, it's 100% worth it.

But it's still undoubtedly an addiction. When I take breaks (or excursions, as I mention in this post), they're to think about work. They're to freely brainstorm.

So I guess all of us, as writers, are addicted to working. And the way I see it, there are much worse things we could be addicted to.

Please note, though: while I do embrace my workaholic lifestyle, I do NOT condone substance addiction. If you are struggling with a drug or alcohol addiction (or your coffee addiction has become unmanageable--that's not a joke; it does happen), please do seek help.

Cheers to everyone out there who puts their heart and soul into their work! And happy writing!



  1. I feel like nowadays it's difficult to become a serious writer if you aren't addicted to being a workaholic. It takes so much these days to be noticed and get our work out there that we have to over extend ourselves. But I do like the correlations between writing and addiction in general. I've never really thought about it before. Coffee in general brings me comfort, but I have to have a cup of something warm next to me when I start off writing. It sets the mood for me. But I am addicted to coffee and have to have at least two cups a day, but at the mention of coffee anywhere, my mood brightens haha writers, in general, I feel have a lot of issues! But it's what makes us wonderful.

    1. Hey Chelsea! Thanks for your comment! :) This is SO true...and I'm glad you can relate to my struggle! Balancing all our writing, all our self-promotion work, and additional jobs we need to take on to pay the bills...it leaves no time for anything else! But I definitely have an addictive personality. Working, coffee...sometimes I even get addicted to specific foods & can't stop eating them. So I recommend staying away from drugs!


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