Why Murakami is like Radiohead

If Haruki Murakami and Douglas Coupland were in a fist fight, who would win?
… If you’re looking for that kind of information, go someplace else. This is a serious blog dammit. Before I continue, two things about me.

1. My two favourite authors are Haruki Murakami and Douglas Coupland.
2. I also enjoy writing myself.

I noticed that reading a novel by either Murakami or Coupland is strongly correlated to my own output. To be precise: reading a novel by Coupland is inspiring and makes me want to write myself, whereas reading Murakami* makes me want to give up writing all together. Because: if stories like these are written, what’s the point of me making any attempt of scribbling down something?

This effect also happens when it comes to music or painting. My two favourite bands as well as my two favourite painters have completely opposite effects on my own creativity. When listening to Kashmir I want to make music myself, after listening to Radiohead the thought of making music myself merely depresses me. Luc Tuymans‘ paintings make me want to paint where I find the work of Francis Bacon too humbling.

Is on better than the other? Is an artist that inspires you to take up that art as well better or less good than an artist who will sooner make you quit any attempt to create? I have no idea. All I know is, if I don’t update this blog in the coming two or three weeks… you know what I’m reading.

*Admittedly, I cannot read Japanese, I have read the novels as translated by Jay Rubin.


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