Ennui and Dark Nights

This is one of those days after an insane week, with a few glasses of wine and some introspection. So if you’re not interested in the blathering of an overworked writer/creative-type/engineer, push off now. You won’t find any interest in what I’m about to post.

But this is one of those days when I ask, “Why the hell do you do this?” Deep in the middle of a book (50k words in), deep in the middle of multiple client projects, deep in the middle of production issues that remind me why I got out of manufacturing in the first place, I have to ask: Why work so damn hard?

The top-level answer is simple: if you are not a trust-fund baby, or have the incredible good fortune to be early into a company with excellent stock options and liberal divestiture requirements that just happens to be successful and go public, this is how you become successful: through many, many years of hard work. Insanely hard work. You laugh at your friends when they complain they have to work a 10-hour day for the same salary, you laugh at people who carp and bitch about having their pension moved back from 50 to 55, you laugh at people who say they work hard, when they have the luxury to call you in the middle of the day and talk for an hour. And that’s all totally cool, that’s their choice, and that’s what they signed up for. I have signed myself up to far to0 many things, and now I’m paying the price.

And that is cool, too, in the long term. But now is not the long term. Now is when everything is so finely balanced that the smallest change in the schedule cascades through everything else, and jeopardizes every deadline. Now is when “time off to relax” means working on the house. Now is when the long days transform into long nights, and long weeks, until you can’t see the end.

So I sit and wonder: What can I let go of?

Writing? No. Much to the chagrin of the people who don’t like my stuff, I’m a compulsive writer. I have to write. If you read it, that’s great. If you love it, that’s even better. But even without an audience, I have to put words on the screen.

Marketing? No, that pays the bills. And it’s a lot of fun being a creative. I’d lie if I said I didn’t love it. And yes, perhaps that makes me a crass lapdog of the commercial interests, but it also makes me the willing lapdog of some very cool clients which include Albert’s Organics and The Garlic Company. I’m loving food. The lack of bullshit and politics and posturing is refreshing, and we’re doing some of our best work for food clients these days. Perhaps some day we’ll pick up some more tech accounts, which are a lot of fun on a totally different level. But both share the same lack of believing our own bullshit which is the hallmark of big corporate and entertainment. Good riddance to them; let someone else dance to your tune.

Engineering? No. Again. I love to make things. And the tiny company I started shows every signs of becoming larger. Not large. But larger. Hell, Wired and CrunchGear and Gizmodo picked us up. Thankfully, I have people to help with that one, or it would eat my life. Such that it is.

So, am I complaining? No. More than anything, this is probably an internal monologue, set to the rhythm of a blog. It’s me, reminding myself why I do things. Why I’m overworked. Why my life is a little crazy.

And there you go. If that helps you get where you’re going, so much the better. If not, tune out for a while, and I’ll have some more thoughts on writing, being positive, or other relevant stuff . . . in a while.

Until then, keep writing . . . and keep working hard. It will take you places. It is worth it.

Or at least I keep telling myself.

August 20th, 2010 / 1,770 Comments »

1,770 Responses to “Ennui and Dark Nights”

  1. Heartburn Remedies Says:

    I think this is among the most vital information for me. And i am glad reading your article. But wanna remark on some general things, The site style is great, the articles is really excellent : D. Good job, cheers

  2. Priscila Cabrera Says:

    Really educational blog right here. I could not make a much better one if my entire life depended on this.

  3. Lose Weight Says:

    Usually I don’t read article on blogs, however I would like to say that this write-up very forced me to take a look at and do it! Your writing taste has been surprised me. Thank you, very nice post.

  4. pmyo Says:

    godd luck men thanks men

  5. catnip seeds Says:

    the clock radios that we have at home are made by General Electric and they are really sturdy-

  6. Pool gate latch Says:

    lip gloss with olive oil is the best because it can moisturize your lips as well”

  7. best restaurants Says:

    You lost me, friend. I mean, I imagine I am what youre saying. I recognize what you’re saying, but you just appear to have forgotten that might be another folks inside the world who view this trouble for the purpose it happens to be and may even perhaps not go along with you. You could be turning away numerous individuals who appeared to be lovers of one’s website.

  8. Sol Burney Says:

    I want assembling utile information , this post has got me even more info! .

  9. huggies coupons Says:

    excellent points altogether, you just received emblem reader. What might you recommend in regards to your put up that you simply made some days ago? Any sure?

  10. Legal sounds Says:

    I thought it was going to be some boring old site, but I’m glad I visited. I will post a link to this page on my blog. I believe my visitors will find that very useful.

  11. Chuck Firth Says:

    healthy eating should be our top priority since there are many junk foods and foods with no nutritional value these days-

  12. sql 2005 sp4 Says:

    Enjoyed studying this, very good stuff, regards.

  13. huggies coupons Says:

    I just like the valuable info you provide on your articles. I’ll bookmark your weblog and take a look at again here frequently. I’m rather certain I will be informed many new stuff right here! Good luck for the next!

  14. Athena Lady Says:

    Hey there! I’m at work browsing your blog from my new iphone 3gs! Just wanted to say I love reading your blog and look forward to all your posts! Carry on the outstanding work!

  15. Alonso Fanizzi Says:

    eye glasses are not only stylish but they can also protect your eyes from contaminants’

  16. Get A Date With A Stripper Says:

    I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here. The sketch is tasteful, your authored subject matter stylish. nonetheless, you command get got an edginess over that you wish be delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come further formerly again as exactly the same nearly a lot often inside case you shield this increase.

  17. liposuction surgery Says:

    liposuction is one of the famous cosmetic treatment for beauty care. liposuction are used to cure aging, weight loss problems

  18. donor eggs Says:

    We wish to thank you once more for the beautiful ideas you gave Janet when preparing her own post-graduate research plus, most importantly, regarding providing all of the ideas within a blog post. If we had been aware of your web site a year ago, we’d have been rescued from the nonessential measures we were having to take. Thank you very much.

  19. diet sehat Says:

    The information you provided here i will discuss extremely precious. It ended up this type of pleasurable surprise to possess that expecting me as i awakened today. They can be constantly to the level easy to understand. Thanks quite a bit for that valuable ideas you’ve got shared in this article.

  20. rabbit vibrator Says:

    Thx for your wonderful posting! I genuinely loved reading it, you may be a great writer.I will be sure to bookmark your site and will eventually come back in the future. I want to support you to definitely continue your great job, have a pleasant evening!