4. Douglas Adams Procrastinates Right Into Productivity
Douglas Adams is one of the greatest and laziest writers to have ever lived. His Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy is a seminal book in both sci-fi and British literature. But Adams was famously prone to procrastination. At one point, he gave a Hitchhiker’s book a cliff-hanger ending purely because he couldn’t be bothered to keep typing to the end of the paragraph.
But his greatest act of procrastination undoubtedly came in the mid-1990s. Contracted to do a book called the Starship Titanic, Adams kept putting it off for years on end. Eventually, his procrastination grew so extreme that, according to Terry Jones, he created an entire computer game just to avoid doing work on his novel.
Bear in mind this was the 1990s, when creating a playable computer game in your bedroom was something that maybe only six and a half people could do. Yet Adams still wound up creating a sprawling point-and-click adventure which he triumphantly dumped in front of his publishers as an alternative to writing. His publishers took one look, agreed to release it, and then said that they’d still need the novel. With only five weeks to go, Adams called up Monty Python member Terry Jones and begged him to write it instead. Jones obliged, claiming later that he wrote the whole thing in the nude. (Because why not?)