Addicted in Academe

Addicted in Academe, Anonymous, The
Chronicle of Higher Education

The cliché of the drunken author (usually male, and often a
charming, funny, bittersweet stereotype,) makes us think that the
writer’s life is one of necessary inebriation: that either the
source of creativity or the ability to cope with the seeming lack
of it issues directly from the bottle. But Anonymous, writing in
The Chronicle Review, has been through it and back,
and her experience with rehab, AA, and sobriety proved to be
perhaps more insightful than any drunken episode. For her, drinking
seemed at first a natural companion to her literary life. Hemingway
was to be read with a glass of wine, and she remembers ‘I couldn’t
envision dinner without pinot noir, a conference without the hotel
bar, a lonely evening without a brandy, a department meeting
without the promise of a glass of sherry upon coming home.’ But at
some point the connection between alcohol and writing didn’t turn
out to be the romanticized notion that it had been, and Anonymous
relates the misconceptions that many of us tend to believe.
Julie Madsen
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