All-time productivity high follows mystic comment

From the Archives

Originally published July 7, 2014

It happened one Friday. Specifically, it happened Friday before last. In a casual conversation about careers and projects, someone made a remark to me. It’s not important who said it, what was said, how it was said, or even whether it meant anything. Suffice it to say that the comment caught me off guard and prompted the most productive weekend and ensuing week off from work that I’ve had in many years. Read on for a recap of that week. (No, I won’t reveal details of what was said or by whom. She knows who she is, and she knows what she said.)

Mini-magazine complete
Before that Friday, I was on the fence about designing a mini-magazine for an event coming up in November. In fact, it was partly the topic of Friday’s discussion. I sought some creative design advice for print media, and in addition to online research, I wanted first-hand wisdom from someone with unique talent and vision. All I got at the time of asking was a slew of questions that I reluctantly answered. Then came the remark that stuck in my head, though I’m more convinced now than ever that it meant nothing. At the time, I envisioned so many different ways it could be interpreted that I went home that night and polished off the mini-magazine as if my life depended on it, breaking night and finishing sometime Saturday morning.

[Omitted paragraph]

Stubborn characters cooperate
About four years ago I had started writing a story that was to be adapted for short film. The filmmakers came to me with an outline of a story. My role was to flesh it out. I started with an outline and two characters. Before I wrote the main story, I worked on back stories. I mean, I really went to work on these back stories. Problem came when I had to start penning the main story for film. I had nothing. I remained uninspired and unmotivated to continue the work. Last week, the two main characters finally stopped fighting me, and I couldn’t stop writing about them. Eight pages later, I had laid the new foundation for the main body of this long-forgotten story. Even if the filmmakers never ask about the project again, I’ve enough fuel to churn out this story and a few others that I’ve put on a back burner.

Household finesse
As meticulous as I am about pretty much everything, there are times when my preoccupations with many interests get in my way of completing simple chores, like washing dishes or vacuuming carpets. Not this past week. My home received a top-to-bottom treatment, despite a thunder storm dumping gallons of water into my front and back bedrooms before I could get to the windows to remove air conditioners from them.

Streaming text
OK. Part of my recovery from ending my Samsung Digital Experiment is starting new projects and finishing long-time pending ones. For instance, there were some videos that needed transcribing for another deal in which I play some small role. I had let this task go to the back burner because it isn’t the part of video production I enjoy most. Nonetheless, I unearthed the energy, time, and mental space to transcribe those videos after that Friday dialogue.

[Omitted paragraph]

Well, the truth is that I’ve analyzed the remark, given its context and what I know of the speaker, and turns out that it means absolutely nothing. It was just intellectual, organic to the conversation we were sharing. Just the same, it was refreshing to experience the energy and enthusiasm that gave me the most exciting and productive week I’ve had in years. I’ll never ask what may or may not have been intended by the remark; still, I’ll always have last week.