I finished my little experiment at midnight on August 28th. I got little done on my comics and nothing at all on my book or web products. The experiment, then, failed.
It failed for a couple of reasons. I let myself sleep on my own schedule, which may have been a mistake. I don’t seem to have any natural sleep rhythm. For four days I slept from 5AM to 2PM. The next I slept from 6AM to 6PM (which surprised the hell out of me, and probably alarmed my girlfriend, who was away at the time and only aware that I was failing to return messages). And the next, when I had a commitment, I slept from 930AM to 2.30PM. I’d hoped my schedule might self-correct, but that’s obviously not in the cards for me, at least not on this sort of short-term basis.
I also took on time-consuming work beyond my creative projects. I put more time than I meant to into the house. I put up a room’s worth of mouldings and hung French doors. I’m involved in an online business venture and put a day into learning the tools we’re using for that. I offered to manage a friend’s business’s website a while back, so I spent several hours on that (and I’ll spend more time on it before I’m done). Not what I set out to do.
But: I enjoyed doing the house stuff. I feel good about having those items done (more or less: The doors need a little work, the door frame needs a little work, there are 4 more rooms and a hallway’s worth of mouldings to put up…). The business took a particularly productive turn after I was able to show the guys the basic website. And the work I’ve done on my buddy’s site has given me a chance to work with a design language I haven’t been exposed to previously and to do a CSS refresher to boot.
A failed experiment, then, but one with unexpected benefits. I wish people had dropped by, but to be honest I was a bit worried about that; I tend to be particularly prone to overcommitment where people are involved. Ten days, give or take, working in the focused, choose-your-own-schedule mode I’ve dreamed about was probably the best version of this experience I could have hoped for.
I’ll do it again, and again, and again. And yes, you will still be invited when I do.